HIV - Prevention Expert Forum
Symptoms 1 year post exposure
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This forum is limited to prevention of HIV and to safe sex in general. All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Symptoms 1 year post exposure

Frankly I have spent untold hours every day through the holidays researching the issue.  Once I think I've convinced myself I'm ok another "symptom" pops up and I go back to researching.

I'm a 40 year old male.  About two years ago I started seeing some sex workers when traveling out of town on business.  I saw female SW, Transexual SW and one male SW.  At most 8 times over a year period ending in February 2012.  I performed both uncovered oral on one TSW and received covered anal from one TSW.  In October of 2011 I performed uncovered oral on a MSW and then I covered up for anal sex with him(status unknown). On this last ocassion I was very drunk and while I thought I was protected - I can't be perfectly sure.

I always have a stuffy nose and frequently get sinus infections (bad allergies).  I also have been getting cancor sores (herpes) around my mouth for years. FYI - I don't ever recall having early HIV symptoms after any of my previous encounters.  

Over Thanksgiving I got a really stuffy nose and a constant post nasal drip.  Also frequent cancor sores (I take valtrex).  On December 1st I read about world AIDS day on the internet and my anxiety has gone through the roof ever since.  My symptoms since are as follows; stuffy nose, post nasal drip, Tinnitus (on amox K clav since mid december), severe fatigue - some days very light headed and out of it.  Some evenings can't keep from falling asleep on the couch at 8pm, continued cancor sores, itchy eyebrows, loss of appetite, loose stool in the am (perhaps the amos), Tingle of my feet and in my fingers, some minor night sweats (6 nights), high blood pressure and now taking blood pressure meds.  

Right now my symptoms are that I have severe tinnitus and I am fatigued when I wake up, throughout the day and at night.  Now on more antibiotics to kill what my ENT thinks might be a staph infection in my sinuses.

Could these symptoms be HIV?
239123_tn?1267651214
Welcome to the forum.

Sometimes the title of a question provides most or all the information for an accurate reply. Symptoms are always totally unreliable in predicting the presence of HIV, and they are always overruled by HIV test results.  Assuming you have symptoms you are concerned about and you had a negative HIV test more than 6 weeks (and for sure if more than 12 weeks) after the last possible exposure or onset of symptoms, then for sure you don't have HIV -- no matter what the symptoms are.

Now I have looked at your question, which also led me to glance at your previous discussion on the HIV community forum.  Unlike most such questions, it seems you have not been tested for HIV.

Your symptoms are not at all typical for someone with HIV, and based on the exposure described, it is exceedingly unlikely you were infected.  But as already implied, the thing to do is have an HIV test.  All people who are sexually active outside a mutually monogamous relationship should be HIV tested from time to time, like once a year (regardless of safe sex practices), so you're due for testing anyway.  Based on all you have said, you can definitely expect a negative result.

Feel free to return with a follow-up comment that reports the result of an HIV test.  But I won't have any other comments or advice until then.  There is no point in speculating about very low probabilities when a definite answer is easily available.

Regards--  HHH, MD
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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Edward W Hook, MDBlank
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