You can rely 100% on any HIV test done 3 months after the last possible exposure. You don't say what your risks have been since your commercial sex contact 6 years ago, but from your question I assume you have not otherwise been at risk. Nothing "messes up" an HIV test, with the possible exception of profound immune deficiency of the sort seen in someone near death from advanced cancer or potent chemotherapy. Prednisone doesn't do it. Thus, your symptoms cannot be due to HIV.
Saying your genital warts were due to HPV is like saying a cold is caused by a cold virus; all genital warts are due to HPV, usually type 6 or type 11. It is true there is no test for men to check for asymptomatic HPV infection, but you don't need a test because you know you are infected.
Aldara is not the greatest medication for warts, and the slow response you are experiencing is typical. Other treatments are available; you should ask your provider about them. If in doubt, seeing a dermatologist is a good bet. In the meantime, don't worry about having a baby. HPV is not commonly transmitted to newborns, and in any case if/when your wife is pregnant, her obstetrical provider can be on the lookout for warts. It really isn't a serious risk.
I hope this helps. Thanks for the thanks about the forum. Best wishes-- HHH, MD
I forgot to mention that with my HIV test I was also tested for siphilis, should I get more STD testing done? Both tests were negative.
I've been where you are. I'm not an M.D. but while you're waiting for Dr. HHH to respond... He answered questions like yours recently on the other STD site before it stopped taking HIV queries. (1) You tested negative! Accept the good news! (2) Stress, including HIV anxiety, can cause the GI problems you describe. (3) The meds you describe wouldn't have affected your HIV test either way. If I'm wrong, Dr. HHH will correct me in his response to you. But try to take it easy meanwhile. Medhelp is great. Another good site is thebody.com Look for the link to the HIV transmission and safe sex forum. A lot of folks worry about HIV when they have no medical reason to do so (again, I was one).
Thank you! I was also thinking that my GI problems were due to the high stress/anxiety I was under before and after my HIV test. I explained that to my GI specialist and he didn't think that was the cause of my symptoms so we're still working towards a diagnosis.
I really appreciate your feedback! I'll try to take it easy and enjoy life and my family like I should be doing.
To my knowledge, HIV-2 is not prevalent in Costa Rica. In any case, it is even less easily transmitted than HIV-1, and your exposure was low risk anyway (since you pulled out quickly after the condom broke). Further, your symptoms do not suggest HIV at all. And yes, most people with symptomatic HIV infection would have at least subtle abnormalities in their routine blood counts. Finally, roughly half the HIV testing in the US now includes HIV-2 routinely; if uncertain, contact the provider or lab where you were tested and ask them whether you were tested for HIV-2. But even if not, I wouldn't worry about it.
Hi Doctor, me again. I was reading on other forums regarding the different HIV tests and found out you can test for hiv 1 and 2. I am pretty positive (although not 100%) that I was tested for hiv 1. Something I left out from my original question was that my exposure was in Costa Rica (not sure what hiv virus lingers there). Do you recommend I get tested again for hiv 2 if I was tested for hiv 1 a month or 2 ago (result = non-responsive, does this mean negative?). After that exposure there hasn't been any other potential exposures. I'm freaking out because I've had so many problems in the last few months such as swollen nodes in armpit, behind ears and groin area. Unexplainable diarrhea that comes and goes lasting almost 1 week, mouth sores, headaches, tingling in my ears and arms, ear pain, loss of appetite, abdominal pain... I can come up with a million more symptoms. I really need your advice is I'm just overreacting or if I should be worried due to my symptoms. I have REALLY BAD PAIN on my left armpit... my wife felt around and said she felt pea sized bumps. Also, I've had other blood tests done in the past few months and my WB count is within normal limits, do patients with HIV normally show a low or high WB count?
Thanks again! I'll make sure another donation goes your way!