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Author Topic: scared and worried!  (Read 5142 times)

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Offline worried029

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scared and worried!
« on: December 19, 2009, 05:15:36 PM »
Hi everyone. I have been really worried for a long time. Had unproteceted receptive intercourse a few months back. I feel miserable and very stupid to let this happen.

Exactly 21 days after that night a rash appeared all over my trunk, back and chest... flat red blotches like rubella. I never had rashes before, I was not on any medication and I am not allergic to anything. That same night started having a annoying ringing on my ears.

After a few days I was having other symptoms, a ulcer on my arm, sores on my lips, inside my nose, on my both ears and my penis, a very intense hoarseness and some hair loss.

I have never been sick my entire life, never had any STDs or any other halth problem, and suddenly I found myself in the middle of this mess, all the sores were getting really nasty looking and I didn't feel like leaving my house or looking at the mirror anymore.

My life had become miserable, I have been under a severe depression and still feels like I am living in a nightmare and trying to wake up from it. I started to drink a lot of liquor every day as a sedative to calm down and heal the pain and guiltiness I've been feeling. I know the right thing to do was to get tested right away but I was just too scared to do it.

The rash lasted 22 days and disappeared but all the sores were getting worse every day and I finally decided to see my doctor for a complete blood work including all STDs. I couldn't delay it any more. They took my blood exactly 14 weeks (98 days) after my exposure.

Got the results after a week. hiv negative but syphilis was highly reactive.  Everything else was normal and negative for all other STDs as well. I was treated with three weekly double shots of penicillin and after the first one horseness went away, all the sores started to heal, and vanished completely after a week. I am still thanking God for that.

What's holding me from moving on with my life now is the that I can't find a reason for the rash and the doctors I went to don't have a good explanation either. Never had any health problems before, and I never used any drugs. Should I get re tested or a 14 week EIA is really conclusive? Could syphilis and the heavy drinking I started after the rash delay seroconversion?

I have been reading and learning a lot here. My thanks to everyone on this website who have been helping and supporting others who are going thru such a rough time. I'll really appreciate your opinion on my case.

Offline RapidRod

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2009, 06:14:40 PM »
No you don't need any further HIV testing. You are conclusively negative.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2009, 07:28:45 PM »
Not having had a satisfactory explanation for your rash is not a sound basis for thinking that your HIV test is invalid. You are HIV negative. Period. End of story.

See another doctor for another evaluation about your rash. It has nothing to do with HIV. There is no need for further HIV testing.
Andy Velez

Offline worried029

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2009, 08:50:21 PM »
Thank you Andy and RapidRod for answering... The doctors who saw me didn't have any explanation for the rash, they said its typical from acute hiv infection, but it also could be from secondary syphilis.

But I first had a rash, and then the cankers came after 10 days, secondary syphilis doesn't come first and that's why I'm so worried.

On top of that I've been reading that multiple genital cankers are more common in syphilis with hiv co infection because of the immune system being compromised. I had three genital cankers... Can the immune system get compromised within a month after an infection with hiv?

If someone gets a rash from ARS is that from the virus itself or a sign that the immune system is attacking the virus and is producing antibodies?

I have always been extremely healthy and never used any drugs besides alcohol and cigarettes. I want to believe that three months is conclusive for a test but some people here on the forum say that they took longer to seroconvert.

Syphilis and heavy drinking (i started with that after the rash came) can delay antibody production?

I know you can't diagnose my rash but because it being so common for hiv, and by analyzing my case and risk, isn't it more likely that I'm having a late seroconvertion?

I don't know if should feel worried the way I am or not. The fear over this situation is killing me faster than anything else could. thank you very much for helping me! You guys are doing an amazing job with this website!

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2009, 09:00:47 PM »
worried,

There are NOT people on this website who claim to have seroconverted late. Just because someone says they had a negative test at such and such a date then tested positive at a later date does not mean it's late seroconversion - it means they had additional risks since their last negative test.

If you cannot bring yourself to believe your negative hiv results, go test again. Provided you've not had additional risks since the unprotected intercourse you mention above, you're going to collect another negative result.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline worried029

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  • Posts: 7
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2009, 04:57:44 PM »
Thank you Ann. I was going to wait a few more months to get tested again but I dont think I will be able to. For the last few nights I'm having swollen glands on my neck a low very grade fever, and cold sweats. Never had that before.

Also, I forgot to mention that for 2 days during the rash I also woke up drenched in sweat, had to change my shirt, felt nauseous for 4 days and couldn't eat. Never had any of this before too.

I just can' believe I'm so unlucky to be the tested negative after 14 weeks and then turn positive. I was never sick before in my life besides rarely having a cold.

I wish I had a fever other than the rash, it's much more usual to happen on someone healthy. The rash is more more defining for hiv. With all that happening I feel like I'm adding 2 + 2 and hopping to get a 5.

And no I didn't have any additional risks and haven't being with ANYBODY after the risk I've mentioned. And after what I'm going through the last thing I want is to be with somebody at all.

I just can't take being under so much stress anymore and I am beyond being depressed. I wanted to take a break from all this and travel after New Years, get some peace but I don't know what's coming next, everyday is something new showing up on me and this is all happening too fast. Feels like I'm going from being totally healthy to skipping hiv and going to aids. Thanks for your support.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2009, 05:10:34 PM »
Your fears and doubts notwithstanding, you have reliably tested negative for HIV. You ARE HIV negative.

Whatever is going on with you symptomatically has nothing to do with HIV. Period. End of story.

If your doctor can't diagnose what is going on then get a second opinion.
Andy Velez

Offline worried029

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2009, 12:49:50 AM »
Andy, I have been to 4 doctors in the last few months, my regular doctor, the chief ER doctor at the hospital where I had my first shot of penicillin, and two different infectologists to finish up with the syphilis shots. They ruled out everything else and were left with secondary syphilis or primary hiv rash. When I pointed out  I had cankers only 10 days after the rash they said I should be tested again for hiv in another month or two even though I had it done at 14 weeks from my last time with someone.

It makes me believe its much more likely I'm having a late seroconversion other than secondary syphilis showing up on me before the primary.

At the same time you say that 14 weeks is conclusive witch I believe based all the experience you have... I really want to believe so.

Just a few more questions to clear up my mind!

1) Is it based only on the CDC recommendations or you guys have others reasons or bases to believe that a 3 month test is always conclusive? Are you o some kind of involvement or work with hiv testing?

2) Do you know if a syphilis co infection, heavy drinking and stress can delay seroconversion to past 14 weeks in someone overall healthy?

3) How many hiv antibodies needs to be in the blood for EIA to catch? How sensitive this test really is?

4) I know this is not a syphilis website but do you know if a rash on the trunk could possibly come first before the cankers?

Thank you Ann, Rod, Andy...

Offline RapidRod

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  • Posts: 15,288
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2009, 03:32:45 AM »
Anyone who continues to post excessively, questioning a conclusive negative result or no-risk situation, will be subject to a four week Time Out (a temporary ban from the Forums). If you continue to post excessively after one Time Out, you may be given a second Time Out which will last eight weeks. There is no third Time Out - it is a permanent ban. The purpose of a Time Out is to encourage you to seek the face-to-face help we cannot provide on this forum.

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2009, 08:13:11 AM »
worried,

You're only assuming that you had "secondary syphilis showing up [on me] before the primary". Syphilis lesions are painless and they can be hidden. If you had one inside you or in a place you don't normally look at, you never would have known it was there. That's why syphilis is still so common - people often have no idea they have it until they start getting secondary symptoms. So knock off on the woe-is-me-I-got-secondary-before-primary crap, ok? Thanks. And if the doctors you're going to don't know the difference between secondary syphilis rash and primary hiv rash, then it's time to find new doctors.

1. Hiv testing guidelines around the world state that three months is conclusive - and has been for years now. With experience, we know that most people who have actually been infected will seroconvert and test positive by six weeks, regardless of syphilis coinfection.

2. No, it won't delay seroconversion. We've already told you this repeatedly.

3. The average time to seroconversion is 22 days. I don't think anyone knows the exact numbers of antibodies that must be present.

4. I already answered this. You most likely had a syphilis lesion and didn't know it was there. You tested negative for hiv but positive for syphilis. Ergo, you had syphilis, not hiv. It's time you moved on with your life.

Test for hiv again if you want, but don't expect to be permitted to use this website to wring your hands over your conclusive hiv negative status.

Please consider yourself warned.

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Ann

  • Administrator
  • Member
  • Posts: 28,140
  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2009, 08:43:10 AM »
And by the way, I forgot to add something.

You started having symptoms that worried you three weeks after your encounter. If those symptoms had anything to do with hiv, you would have tested positive at your 14 week test. Why? Because the symptoms that some people experience during ARS are not caused by the virus itself, they are caused by the process the body goes through while making antibodies. If your body was producing antibodies and the accompanying symptoms at week three, you would have, beyond a shadow of doubt, tested positive at 14 weeks.

YOU DO NOT HAVE HIV!

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline worried029

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2009, 02:32:13 PM »
Thank you Ann, and sorry if asked too many questions... I won't be posting afer this last one anymore.

I understand that I could have a syphilis lesion somewhere else and don't kow about it. But if I had secondary syphilis why did the cankers on my penis appeared after the rash?

About the doctors I'm going to not knowing the difference between secondary syphilis rash and primary hiv rash, what is the difference? Can't them both be maculopapular and show anywhere in the body? Isn't syphilis mostly common on the hands and feet and hiv on the trunk?

I got it on the trunk only. A lot of red flat dots the size of a finger tip. All over... but none on my hands. That's why I'm so scared.

Thank you for all your help, your patience and sorry for my english. My main language is portuguese... I will rely on my 14 week and take it as being conclusive.

A great holiday to everyone here!

Offline worried029

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  • Posts: 7
Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2010, 08:49:44 PM »
My life has stopped now for over 6 months, crying and worring day and night is all I have done. I am ready to face another test now at 6 months and I really need some help.

I know you can't diagnose the rash I had but it was not from allergy, medication, rubeola, was for sure syphilis or hiv.

If I had a canker hidden like you Ann said, the rash woud still have to take longer than 21 days, as the chances I had syphilis before is ZERO.

On top of that had multiple cankers, and I now have reasons to believe the guy I was with is positive.

What do you think? Can I really be confident the 13 weeks test I had is conclusive? Why doctors still insist at 6 months?

Offline RapidRod

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2010, 09:43:43 PM »
Anyone who continues to post excessively, questioning a conclusive negative result or no-risk situation, will be subject to a four week Time Out (a temporary ban from the Forums). If you continue to post excessively after one Time Out, you may be given a second Time Out which will last eight weeks. There is no third Time Out - it is a permanent ban. The purpose of a Time Out is to encourage you to seek the face-to-face help we cannot provide on this forum

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2010, 08:49:37 AM »
Clearly you are unwilling to accept that you are HIV negative, which you are. You also know that we cannot diagnose anything in this setting. That is something you need to clarify with your doctor(s).

You have reliably tested negative for HIV. Testing to 6 months is overall an outdated concept EXCEPT when longtime intravenous drug use is involved, treatment for cancer or an organ transplant are issues for the person.

Stop self-diagnosing. It's bad for your health. If you come back again insisting you are HIV positive you are going to get a Time Out for 4 weeks.

HIV is not your issue. Period. 
Andy Velez

Offline worried029

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2010, 09:23:25 AM »
Ok! Its just an update on my case. I hope I don't get banned.... Took another test, this time at six month, the Home Access one and it came back negative. Very happy...  but I was so sure I got infected that I am still worried.

I know you say symptoms mean anything, but I had so many of them including the nasty rash over all my torso, soaking night sweats, loss of apatite, nausea, vomiting, ulcers, among a few others I can't even remember... all starting at 21 days after unprotected sex.

I am not questioning the window period, but I want to know from your experience how reliable this tests are? If they are always 100% accurate after the window period?

And also do you know why people sometimes have unprotected sex with someone hiv positive and do not become infected?

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: scared and worried!
« Reply #16 on: March 22, 2010, 09:45:39 AM »
The tests are very reliable. You have without a doubt tested negative for HIV. Your symptoms are something to discuss with your doctor. They have nothing to do with HIV.

HIV is not an easy virus to transmit. Some people have a higher resistance to transmission than others. The infected partner may have a low viral load. There are various factors as to why someone has an exposure sexually and doesn't become infected.

Just be glad you got through this without becoming infected and make sure that in the future whomever  is the insertive partner is always wearing a condom for intercourse.
  
If you come back with more of this unwarranted concern about HIV you are going to find yourself getting a 28 day Time Out.

Stop with the drama and get on with your life.  
Andy Velez

 


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