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Avatar universal

Nervous about Prenatal Testing

Dr HHH--
I know your first thought is that you probably answer this question once a day, but it is worth my $15 to see your answer directly to me.  

I'm now 27 and am pregnant.  I have been married four years.  When I was 20 (yes, 7 years ago) I had one unprotected sex incident with a guy in college.  He was a white, non drug user.  College athlete, so he may have even had routine HIV tests.  I've actually seen the guy recently, and he looks perfectly healthy.  Within a few days, I had the flu.  Granted, this was in January so I guess that wasn't too unusual.  I may have even had a "flu swab" done that confirmed influenza--its been 7 years, so I can't remember.  Anyway, at some point I read about flu symptoms after HIV exposure and the possibility of this has stayed in my mind ever since.  My husband's encounters were few and all protected before we married.  

Of possible note, four years ago, I acquired a skin MRSA infection from my gym.  It was treated incorrectly (with Penicillin) and actually ended up getting in my bloodstream.  This meant a brief hospital stay under the care of an Infectious Diseases physician.  Of course, I thought SURE she was going to diagnose me as HIV positive at any moment.  Well, it didn't happen.  I never consented to an HIV test, so I have no idea if one was done or not then.  She did declare me "perfectly healthy" after the episode based on extensive blood work.  This infection cleared up immediately with the correct antibiotic.  My annual physical CBCs are always normal (except my white count was of course significantly elevated during that one episode)..PAPs normal..Sed and CRP rates normal, although I've only had that one done once.  

Can I relax and enjoy my pregnancy and not worry too much over this HIV test that I know I have coming up?  Is it very unlikely that I am infected at this point??  Thank you.  It will just help me to hear the opinion of an expert.  
4 Responses
300980 tn?1194933000
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Dr. Handsfield and I share the forum.  You got me.  FYI, the reason we share the forum is because we have worked together for nearly 30 years and while our verbiage styles vary, we have never disagreed on management strategies or advice to clients.

The likelihood that you acquired HIV from the exposure you describe 7 years ago is vanishingly low.  HIV is extraordinarily rare among heterosexual college students (and was 7 years ago) and you have had medical care over the interval which would have provided an astute clinician with cause to test if they thought HIV was at all likely.  The information you have provided indicates that you are VERY low risk and have little or nothing to worry about.HIV testing is a routine part of prenatal care, not because infection is likely but because there is so much that can be done to prevent passing infection to unborn children should it be present.  You really have nothing to worry about.  Have the test, it will be negative and then you can relax and concentrate on your pregnancy.  From what you say, I would be flabbergasted if you turned out to have HIV.  EWH
Avatar universal
Dr Hook,

Thank you so much for your quick and direct response.  It helps me be much less nervous about the upcoming prenatal tests.  The Infectious Diseases doctor who treated me for the staph scare a few years ago was coincidentally the head of the regional HIV chapter, so I assume she would have indeed fit the description of an astute clinician.  I'm now a fairly successful CPA, but this one college incident has always stayed with me!  The fact that an expert like you would be "flabbergasted" by a positive test makes me feel pretty good though.  Thanks again.  
Avatar universal
Well, I had the test done late last week.  I was a ball of nerves for the first few hours afterwards, but am still relying on the sheer statistics of it all.  They said they would call me if anything was abnormal.  No call yet.  Any idea on how long it takes for an OB to get those test results back???  This office is actually located within a major hospital here.   You may not even see this post at this point...thanks again for your insight
300980 tn?1194933000
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
The test results are typically available within a week or so of testing. Plesae don't worry, I am confident that your testi will be negative.  EWH
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