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Author Topic: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?  (Read 11999 times)

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Offline trinigirl

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Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« on: December 28, 2012, 08:22:10 am »
On December 1st I had sexual intercourse with a long time friend. We had previously had sex only one time when we were 19. I am now 25. We lost contact and I moved on and had 2 healthy kids. Recently we met up again and old feelings resurfaced. We had unprotected oral sex (me to him) and protected vaginal sex. The condom slipped off and he pulled out of me. He used his finger to retrieve the condom from inside me. This happened on December 1st.

Five days later on December 6th, I came down with a horrible cold. I was coughing up thick mucus and sneezing a lot. What worries me the most though is the dizziness. I've never felt anything like it before. It was severe to the point where I couldn't stand up without holding on to something. I had to crawl to the bathroom with my eyes closed. My eyes were feeling extremely sensitive and I couldn't look at the tv or computer screen because it was too bright. I had to squint to look at anything. Everything was kinda blurry and even when I was lying down the room was spinning. Then came the vomiting. Every single thing I ate came back up. At first I thought I was pregnant but numerous pregnancy tests confirmed that is not the case. I lost my appetite for the duration of this sickness which ended on the 16th of December, and have discovered that I have lost 10 lbs (though I'm not sure the weight loss occurred before or after the sickness since I haven't weighed myself in months).

On the 20th of December, my neck started hurting. It was sore for about two days and a bit stiff and now I feel sharp short pains throughout my body. These pains shoot through my arms, legs, fingers and neck. I have no swollen lymph nodes (although admittedly I don't know what a swollen lymph node looks like), and I didn't get any fever or rash. What I'm experiencing now is annoying muscle twitching even as I type this, a muscle in my neck is twitching and I've been feeling these muscle twitches all over my body that I don't think I've ever experienced this much before.

So now I'm thinking that this guy gave me something, and started googling and my symptoms sorta match ARS and mono. I asked the guy when last he had an HIV test and he told me 3 months ago for his job and it was negative but at this point I don't believe anything. So I guess I'm asking if anyone here can enlighten me (I'm not looking for a diagnosis), just some opinions on if what I'm experiencing sounds like it's ARS. Sorry if this is too long, but any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks.

I should probably also add that the condoms we used were lambskin and not latex since I have a latex allergy. I have heard that lambskin condoms are less effective against stds. We also had sex a total of 3 times that night.

Offline 2scared2die

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Re: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2012, 12:59:02 pm »
I'm surprised no one has responded.   I would say that you have nothing to worry about, but the only way to relieve your stress is to get tested.   I know how you feel about the anxiety,  I am going through it as we speak.  My symptoms are much more persistent and pronounced.   It sounds like you had just the common flu.  ARS symptoms don't come with coughing up mucus and sneezing.

Stop worrying and get tested to give yourself piece of mind.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2012, 02:37:34 pm »
2scared, you need to stop responding to other members in this forum. You are not authorized to do so and only someone who is authorized is allowed to respond. Thanks for your cooperation.
Andy Velez

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2012, 02:47:41 pm »
Trini, nothing you are reporting symptomatically is in anyway HIV specific. But that isn't surprising because from what you have described you had protected intercourse. Condoms provide very effective protection. Even if the condom slipped off as your friend withdrew you were still protected during the actual intercourse.

Since you are allergic to latex condoms, you can try polyisoprene condoms which provide just a effective protection as latex. You might keep a supply handy so that you always have them.

Stop surfing the net as you will only find more there to feed your worst fears and all to no good purpose. I don't see any real risk in your incident. You can get tested at 6 weeks. Assuming you test negative which is what I would expect then it is very likely that you will test negative again at 3 months. But doing that would only be for your peace of mind as I don't think you had a real risk.

If your symptoms persist you should discuss them with your doctor. HIV is not the problem.
Andy Velez

Offline trinigirl

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Re: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2013, 09:24:05 am »
Hi Andy. Thanks for responding. I have scheduled an appointment with my doctor to get a full std screening tomorrow. I spoke to her about what I'm experiencing and she is also confident that HIV is not the issue but that other stds may be.

One thing though, you said condoms provide effective protection, and that I had "protected intercourse", however the ones I used were lambskin and not effective against stds at all. I will definitely not use those again if I make it through this thing ok.

Also, I mean no disrespect at all but I've been reading through a lot of the posts here and you and Ann tell everyone the same thing, that they have had no risk and HIV is not the problem. Even in situations that seem very high risk I've noticed this.  I've noticed you guys also tell people that contracting the virus through one unprotected sexual encounter is unlikely and I disagree. This was explained to me by my doctor over the phone yesterday. The risk is very real even if it was just a single short encounter. So I am wondering if you guys just tell people otherwise to calm their nerves and ease their fears, which may seem like a good thing but is ultimately giving them a false sense of hope and a reason to not get tested.

I do however agree that "symptom surfing" on the net has done nothing but cause me sleepless nights and pointless panic. After every new symptom I discover online, I immediately start to believe I'm experiencing it. I will take your advice and get off the net. And after I am tested I will post my results. If it is HIV, perhaps this thread can help someone who had a similar encounter and symptoms but was repeatedly told HIV was not the problem.

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2013, 04:36:38 am »
Two important things-

1- use polyurethane condoms. Lamb skin condoms are very expensive and don't protect against HIV. As a matter of fact you have to look rather hard to,find them. I mean seriously, choosing them was a terrible mistake. Urethane condoms have been in general circulation for over a decade, and people with latex allergies have known about them longer than that. 

2- don't you dare give advice on other people's threads. Not only is it not allowed, since only vetted  and qualified HIV prevention counselors  are allowed to do so, but your advice was incorrect and inflammatory. You clearly know shit-all about std prevention including HIV and could stand to take a step back and educate yourself before spouting off at others.

You want to critique this site and  the advice given? Please know something about HIV before you attempt to do so. Your antagonistic and entitled attitude will not fly here and I will personally make sure you are not allowed to spout off in areas in which you clearly have zero comprehension.

Our advice is based on thirty years of peer reviewed science. Yours seems based on conjecture and paranoia. You had a risk because you used a condom that does not protect against HIV, it's rare, expensive, and hard to locate lamb skin condoms. You cannot have stumbled across one by accident. Polyurethane condoms are not nearly as difficult to locate, and are usually the same price if not a dollar or two more than latex. Your lack of research in the area of your own sexual health is appalling,

I am not yet calling you a troll. But I am calling you an ill informed, antagonistic barrier to safer sex education. Educate yourself. Use this site's vast lessons in safer sex. Practice that in your own life, and don't you dare come back here with more bullshit,about our advice when kits based on nothing but your fear of and stigma towards HIV positive people.

How very dare you.

« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 04:41:10 am by jkinatl2 »
"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

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Offline Ann

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Re: Are my symptoms typical of ARS?
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2013, 07:10:22 am »

When you posted your ill-advised comments in someone else's thread, you used up your last free post. Should have read the rules first, eh?

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