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Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?

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So I've had a headache, low grade fever (99.2-101), nausea and fatigue for about two weeks. I've had oral thrush, itchy legs and throat sores for about 2-3 months. My body feels like I got hit by a truck. I can't hold down much food, and I've lost probably 7-8 freshly gained pounds (I was working out and eating a lot before this attack).

I'm currently taking augmentin for what my PCP thought was diverticulitis (abdominal pain, nausea, belching, fever), but now I've realized it's most likely something worse.

The thrush tipped me off to go to Walgreens and get a OraQuick take home HIV test, even though thrush is commonly caused by antibiotics. I took it about 24 hours ago, and it was positive. My heart hit the floor, and I immediately ran to the bathroom to vomit. I told my partner while crying hysterically. He tried his best to comfort me. I told him to get tested. He did, and he's negative.

I have a hard time figuring out when I could have gotten infected, as my sexual encounters as of late are all low risk (giving oral).

My last high risk encounter (unprotected anal) was back in late 2012, so if that's when I got it then I'm scared to death because that means I've had it for four years. But, I followed up with the guy and he said he's negative and gets tested regularly (of course I understand that I'm trusting his word).

My last oral encounter was almost a year ago, but this guy is suspect because when we hooked up he had a facebook but now it seems as if he's dropped off the face of the earth.

So as much as I'm hoping this is symptoms of ARS, I'm fearing for much, much worse, like advanced stage

My hysterical borderline panic crying quickly turned to realizing how awful I'm feeling and that I need to step into action to confirm a diagnosis and start treatment.

It's the weekend, and clinics and the health department is closed until Monday.

I thought about going to the ER in hopes that I can speed up confirmatory testing, but I called them and they said they'd probably just help my symptoms and direct me to the health department when they open on Monday.

I know test results from the health department take about 7-10 days, so that means at least 7-10 more days of feeling like this before I'm confirmed and on treatment...

But the way I feel I'm honestly questioning if I have that much time... I can't eat much and I feel horrible.

I just need some support right now... and hopefully some similar stories of people who made it.. because I really don't want to die before I even get on treatment. What do I do?

Since you did have an event of unprotected, receptive anal sex, you are at risk for potential HIV infection, so you will need to be tested for HIV antibodies (as you plan).

The OraQuick test is not conclusive, so you should not presume that it is accurate.

Symptoms are not a reliable indicator of HIV infection since symptoms, if they occur at all, vary widely among individuals.  Therefore, we don't assess them on these forums and you should not assess them, either.  Thrush, in fact, can be caused by a heavy regimen of antibiotics.

If it turns out that you are, in fact, HIV positive, you will be fine--even if you have been infected for several years.  Antiretroviral medication these days is nothing short of miraculous:  you are not dying and are not in the "late" stages of anything (other than, perhaps, your current anxiety over the matter).  Many people on these forums have survived single-digit CD4's and multiple opportunistic infections (I am one of those people).

You will live a long and healthy life.

For the time being, however, though I sure you are very anxious, you will simply have to wait for an HIV-antibody test and a subsequent confirmatory test. 

Continue to rely on this forum for ongoing support and guidance.

Jim Allen:

Sorry to here you had a reactive result. Look if what you said is correct it's not ARS and could be anything making you sick, so go see your doctor and treat what is making you sick.

I agree with Patrick.

Look if you was indeed infected 5 years ago its not the end of the world and will be fine once you start treatment . That is of course if your follow up test indeed confirm your status we see plenty of false reactive results here so no need to panic and even if confirmed than still no need to panic.

Test and in the meantime treat what is making you ill.


Hi all,

I was diagnosed on 4/1 (5 days ago)
CD4 8, VL 800,000+

I was hospitalized for 6 days with histoplasmosis, and what I think they said was mild PCP.

I've been discharged due to fever going down and good vitals, but I still have the PICC line in for out patient IV antibiotic for the next 8 days.

I'm taking mepron, amphocetirin B and cefuroxime axetil (the amphocetrin is the only one through IV).

I haven't started ART yet because the doctor wanted to get these infections out of the way first.

But this treatment seems to be giving me very frequent diarrhea. I got tested for C. Diff. Which was negative. But I feel like I'm living on the toilet. I don't even want to go to the grocery store out of fear of urgently needing to find a toilet. I don't have the desire to eat much, and I get full/nauseous after very little. I'm losing weight.

Is this normal? Will it ever end? I know this is probably the hardest part, but it's just hard fighting through it. It's very stressful and scary.

Jim Allen:

Sorry to hear you are not feeling the best and I hope you recover soon with the treatment.

--- Quote ---But this treatment seems to be giving me very frequent diarrhea
--- End quote ---

Yeah I can image that, look I know you are feeling really rough at the moment and not having a very pleasant time at all (understatement I know) however the treatment is not going to be for ever so do keep that in mind, you just need to get through this hurdle.

You will get better and once you are and can start your HIV treatment and suppress that bug and get back to your life. I know its seem hard to Imagine but its the truth trust me.   

Wishing you all the best.



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