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Author Topic: Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure  (Read 3886 times)

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Offline waitinggame

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Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure
« on: January 18, 2013, 10:12:52 AM »
I am one of those cases of being 99% sure that I have contracted HIV and have been under significant anxiety since about day 6. I have done nothing but research HIV (and its symptoms) and have had very little sleep. I can’t seem to stand larger groups right now as the only thought that comes to mind is: “there are about 30 people in this room, what are the chances that I’m the only one that is going to have HIV?” Most of the time I find my self drifting off into nowhere and I have a very hard time focusing on anything at work. Im also thinking alot about how the rest of my life is in such limbo. Relationships, the inability to have a kid and the financial burden of HIV have constantly been on my mind.

For those that want to skip on the novel I wrote below, my symptoms are as follows:

- Sever swollen throat
- Yellow/white tongue with small red bumps near the tip that come and go
- Uvula covered in white substance
- Puss in the back of throat
- Thrush or leukoplakia in the sides of cheeks, on top/sides of tongue and some peeling on the cheeks around the wisdom teeth (not officially diagnosed by a doctor but I’m having a hard time believing its something else)
- Dark Purple blotches on gums and inner cheeks around the wisdom teeth (looks like its bruising really easy due to irritation)
- Consistent Night sweats for over 18 days
- Small, thin red/brown rash on chest and arm (appeared on different days)
- Mild cough and shortness of breath at day 14
- Didn't notice a fever but I have been very tired

This is the progression of my story, starting the day before the potential exposure.

Day -1 - Heavy Drinking night where, after some shenanigans, I fell into a snow bank and walked for maybe 5-10 minutes without being dressed properly.

Day 0 - Gave unprotected oral sex and a “just the tip scenario” of vaginal sex before using protection. The girl was a one night stand from a bar and I know nothing about her aside from the fact that she is blonde and had a number of tattoos. Again, this was a heavy drinking night.

Day 1 - Woke up the next morning and noticed 3 things: 1) a bit of a swollen top lip with a small ulcer underneath 2) A awkward feeling throat (normal after a night of drinking but perhaps a little worse - I felt like I wouldn't be able to speak without a large glass of water) and 3) a hang over that felt worse than normal and didn't clear up until the evening. That night I went to bed early and didn't do anything aside from eat and sleep.

Day 2 - As far as I can remember, I felt fine. After the one night break, I had yet again another heavy drinking night at a house party. After looking at some photos of this night, it appeared as if my tongue already had some white coating.

Day 3 - Woke up damp after night sweats and had a severe sore throat (difficult to eat).

Day 4 - Sore throat got worse to the point where I could almost not eat. If my mouth was open when I was outside, the wind would make it sting severely. I also noticed that my tongue had a fairly thick yellow/white coating and some small red bumps (looked like herpes).

Day 5 - Opened my mouth and noticed 4 things: 1) My throat/soft palate was very red 2) my uvula appeared to have a red patch on it that was covered with a white substance 3) some pus patches at the back of my throat that would go away after drinking or swallowing and 4) an occasional ache in the ear. Immediately I went to the doctor who said it was “probably” a viral/bacterial infection and he gave me 10 days of penicillin.

Day 6 - 9 - My sore throat stopped hurting but inside my mouth still looked very unhealthy. I started to notice dark purple blotches on my gums and cheek, very noticeable leukoplakia (close to the wisdom teeth) and started to develop a thin film of white on the insides of my cheeks.

Day 10 - The sore on the uvula was no longer covered with the white substance and on one occasion it bled to the point where I had a strong taste of blood in my mouth. A rash appeared on my chest about nipple height. It basically looked like a scratch from a cat but slightly thicker. I cant remember if it was itchy, but it was red with 3 raised areas that were brown in color. It started off completely pink but then progressed to brown.

Day 13 - Went to a lab and had my blood taken for an HIV test. I cant remember which one they are doing but the results are expected within 7-14 days.

Day 14 - Another rash on the arm appeared. This time it was definitely itchy and about half and inch in length, 2 mm wide. Also noticed a mild cough and shortness of breath - especially after exercise.

At this point I also started to notice larger reddish rashes that would come and go hourly. It really looked like they would present themselves under contact. My skin appears to be very sensitive right now and warm.

Day 17 - Took a Rapid Point of Care test and it resulted in a negative result.

Day 18 (Today) - All symptoms continue to bother me, most notably the leukoplakia or thrush and the night sweats. They have both remained consistent. I have also noticed a bit of bleeding in between my gums and my cheek when I eat spicy foods.


Judging by the detail I have written, I am obviously someone that does over analyze things. I saw all of the warning that said you should not diagnose yourself over the internet but I have become increasingly worried because my symptoms are very physical and honestly could not go un missed. I would appreciate any thoughts you have regarding the likeliness of this being ARS and I have full intention on keeping this thread updated with my experience. I found it very comforting to find some people going through something similar and then learning they were negative. I hope my story can provide that to some people a few months from now.

I will repeat the Rapid POC test at 4 weeks, 6 weeks and 12 weeks. I’m also going to talk to my doctor next week about any HIV blood tests I should take given my window period.

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2013, 03:20:53 PM »
I did indeed read your "novel," and need to assure you that you had only the slightest conceivable risk for HIV infection in the incident as you describe it.

Of course, performing oral sex on a female is not a transmission risk. And if indeed it was "only the tip" then you are unlikely in the extreme to have encountered infectious fluids, which are located near the cervix, deep within the vagina. The fluids which lubricate the vagina, which you likely encountered, are not infectious.

If you desire to get tested, a test at six weeks is considered all but definitive, although a three month testing window remains the "gold standard."

I am sorry you have felt unwell. I would not even urge testing over this incident as you described it, much less assign to it the amount of concern you have. HIV is significantly harder to transmit from female to male, and though I urge you to refrain from "dipping" as it COULD lead to unprotected intercourse, your risk in that activity is insignificant.

"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 waitinggame

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Re: Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2013, 09:39:04 PM »
Just a bit of an update. I received my test results from day 13 and they were negative (I understand this test was just about pointless). I have another rapid test scheduled for tomorrow and still plan on getting tested at 6 weeks and 12 week.

I'm at day 31 now and since my last post I've been in and out of anxiety. Some days I will forget while others I will dip into some deep depression. The white patches/bleeding on the inner cheeks around the molars are still there and my tongue is still a little white. These oral symptoms are the ones that scare me the most because I've never seen anything like them in my mouth.

About 5 days ago i also developed a small red bump (about .5-1cm) on the back of the left side of my neck. I have always had some kind of small mass there that moved with the skin but it has grown to about 2-3 times its size and has become very tender. I had a doctor check it out immediately and he told me it was a pimple. I dont believe that its a pimple but believe that it coule be an inflamed cyst.

Now, I had what looked like small herpes zosters on my arm and middle of chest around 2 weeks following exposure... which disappeared after a few days. The small rashes have returned now at day 31 and I continue to have skin that is very sensitive to touch. A light press would leave some redness. Is this typical of ARS? Do small rashes come and go over a 2 week timeframe? Or does one larger rash usually appear and then leave.

Also, I would just like to thank you jkinatl2 for your reply. It provided me with a great deal of comfort for a number of days.

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2013, 11:50:16 PM »
Thanks for the kind words. I wish I had more to offer, but honestly I seriously doubt that HIV is the issue here at all.

Your test at six weeks will prove that, and your comprehensive test at 13 weeks should seal the deal.

Though, and I know this won't penetrate your anxiety, you are going to be totally fine.

"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

Welcome Thread

Offline waitinggame

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Re: Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2013, 08:34:17 PM »
So I had my Rapid POC test today at 32 days and it came back negative. I've seen a lot of different opinions regarding the indication this provides.

Is this 32 day test really a good sign or still kind of pointless? Is there a general percentage like 90% of negatives at 4 weeks do not change?

Offline Ann

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Re: Very Concerned about possible HIV Exposure
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2013, 05:40:42 AM »

The vast majority of people who have actually been infected will seroconvert and test positive by six weeks, with the average time to seroconversion being only 22 days. A six week negative is highly unlikely to change, but must be confirmed at the three month point.

While you didn't wait for the six week mark to test, I would not expect your negative result to change when you confirm at three months, based on your risk level. And honestly, you didn't really have a risk.

If you feel unwell or are otherwise worried about your body, see a doctor. It's nothing to do with hiv.

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