Symptoms are just a terrible indicator is what everyone is trying to tell you. For one, like teak said, not every newly infected person will even get ARS, others do.
There was a study done of people seeking help in an ER for what they thought were classic ARS symptoms. OVER 99% of those people tested negative for HIV, with their symptoms being attributed to some other, common malady. These were people who actually had risks.
ARS symptoms are very generalized, meaning they would be present for a million other reasons (flus, other viral infections, colds, allergic reactions, even anxiety). They are not specific to HIV. It's not like a specific symptom that would point to an illness/condition, like the bullseye marking in Lyme's disease. ARS symptoms just are not reliable, and they could be present in a person for SO many other reasons.
WHEN a person has TRUE ARS, it's not something that is really hard NOT to notice. The people who DO experience ARS are extremely ill..almost ALWAYS a fever over 101-102 is present, and persists. Also, true ARS almost always involves a rash, and generalized swollen lymph nodes (meaning in many locations). The symptoms you describe, and most importantly, their timing are NOT consistent with TRUE ARS at all. Actually, most of them sound anxiety related.
Your risk was low. You don't even really KNOW for sure what your exposure was (if any). For all you know, you (or her) could have removed the condom after sex, then fell asleep.
The most important lesson here is that alcohol and sex are a bad mix. If you hadn't been drunk, you would have used the condom properly beginning to end.
My opinion is that IF you had a risk, it was minimal. Test at the appropriate times and in the meantime, keep yourself busy and try not to think about it too much.
Yes. Unfortunately. I'm pretty sure I put it on. In the morning, there was little to no fluids inside and outside of it. Neither on the woman or me. So I most likely did not ejaculate.
Well a 3 month test will be conclusive. Symptoms have nothing to do with HIV.
A 4th generation test at 28 days is a very good indication but 3 month antibody test is conclusive.
Okay. I will take the 3 month antibody test then, and maybe a sooner one if I continue to worry a lot.
When you say, "Symptoms have nothing to do with HIV" what do you mean?
Are they not similar to ARS?
I should have thought Stranger Danger!
What I mean is symptoms are never used for a diagnosis or an indication, and symptoms don't come on 1 at this time and then 1 at this time and so on and they come on at a specific time frame and they also point to many other things and not just HIV.
So with all of that being said your symptoms have nothing to do with HIV.
I understand what you've described.
It just feels like they have turned on 1 at a time and stayed in place for a bit. They're slowly going away which leads me to believe ARS descriptions I've read online match my situation.
Of course, I'm hoping for negative results.
Regardless of what happens, I will most likely make STD awareness part of my lifestyle. The awareness courses I took could have provided more specific examples to help maintain a more risk free lifestyle. Its still my fault, I think it would have helped though. Sigh.
Thank you for your time and answers!
If you understood what I described then you would understand that it is not ARS.
So basically ARS cannot be diagnosed until after test results are provided?
I'm assuming my situation is mid/high risk?
Risk is a risk, we only use those terms when it comes to unprotected anal sex as that is the highest risk.
Correct, but again your symptoms are not ARS.
That makes sense.
Okay. Time to relax and hope this is some sort of virus or bacterial infection. Obviously, still get tested at the 90 day mark.
No realistic chance you caught HIV. Expect negatives.
What's the best way to describe ARS?
ARS doesn't mean anything. Not everyone that gets infected has ARS.
nursegirl your response with examples has helped me understand ARS.
Thank you guys for your time and responses!
Five days after the initial post (45 days after "exposure"), I still have the headaches, swollen lymph nodes, body pains, white tongue, sleeping problem, and morning diarrhea (upset stomach).
Also, fatigued when trying to exercise. Kayaking or running.
Are systemic yeast infections directly related to HIV?
Why dont you test now. It will be a good indicator and if negative you can confirm the result 3 months after the initial exposure.
You can take a duo test now and confirm the result at 3 months after your exposure
I will not be in the same location for more than a few days. So I'd like to wait until I'm settled for at least a week.
What would be the benefit of finding out before the 3 month mark?
Just to keep you calm because a negative duo test will difficult change
a duo test at 45 days is not needed. all you need is an antibody test, which is a lot cheaper.
Okay. Now, a positive test would just leave me frozen and with few answers.
Just the the test to be aware of your status. If the result is negative you have to confirm it 3 months after the initial exposure. That is crystal clear.
17 days after the initial post (56 days after "exposure"), I still have the headaches, swollen lymph nodes, body pains, white tongue, sleeping troubles, and upset stomach.
I am still waiting for the 3 month mark to get tested.
Just seems weird that I could have these pains for about 6 weeks. Shouldn't a body's immune system fight off the sickness? Whatever it is. If this is not ARS, is there a different medical test I could take to determine what I have?