Avatar universal

Hiv and Condom break worries

I am a 45 year old female; been with the same man for 24 years until our recent divorce.  I had sex with a gentleman I have been dating approximately 2 weeks ago on a Sunday (7/21 - first and only time).  The condom broke, but he did not ejaculate in me.  I reported this to my GP, who ordered STD testing (all came back negative) and HIV testing which I did the Thursday after the breakage, and she wants me to re-test in 3 months.  The HIV test was negative. My gentleman friend stated his last test 6 months ago, was negative.

I was relieved at my negative result, although I know it was only 5 days afterwards.  Yesterday (Friday, 8/2) I woke up with a sore throat, nasal congestion, and a lymph node swollen on the left side of my neck, but no nasal drainage.  I am hoping this is just my summer sinus infection that I get every year, but I am also freaking out because I know it is within the 2 to 6 week mark for me to have seroconversion symptoms.  

Is it possible that I was negative at the time of testing and now I'm positive?  I have always been hyper-vigilant about safe sex, even with my ex-husband because he was a cheater, and I just can't believe the condom broke with my new guy.  Then I worry that maybe he's not being honest about his results, or he's been with someone prior to me with HIV.  

FYI - I also have very HIGH HIV anxiety, ever since an accidental needle stick when I was a paramedic.

any guidance you can provide is much appreciated.

Thank you!
6 Responses
Sort by: Helpful Oldest Newest
Avatar universal
A duo is conclusive after 1 month, all others after 3, to the test you took can't prove anything. No one here pays attention to symptoms because hiv docs can't diagnose from symptoms so you should stop monitoring them and stop worrying that they prove anything.
If his last test was conclusive wrt his window period and he hasn't had unprotected since his test then you don't have to worry. It is unlikely that he is lying so even if you do not trust him, then I wouldn't worry while waiting to do your own test. But if you don't trust him then you will need to use a condom all the time and do your own test at the proper time.
Helpful - 0
It is highly unlikely that the gentleman is infected. This very low probability also brings your risk to a very low level.  However, since you had an unprotected exposure with someone of unknown health status, it is always better to rule out even the minutest possibility.

As you were told, get yourself tested for HIV Duo (Antibody+Antigen) past 28 days of the exposure, collect your conclusive report and move on with your life normally, laying all your residual worries to rest permanently.

Do not get confused from symptoms, they do not mean much, many symptoms due to other common infections look similar to those, caused by HIV, therefore focusing on symptoms only creates confusion.
20620809 tn?1504362969
That's bad luck to have had a broken condom.  But the guy really probably doesn't have HIV and the statistics of getting HIV with a one time exposure are extremely low.  Less than 2 percent chance.  So, try to keep your worry in check with what reality is.  You should test at 4 weeks with a 4th generation duo and if it is negative as I suspect it will be, you will be able to move on with no worry.  
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Thank you everyone. I do my 30 day test in a few days, and I am very very scared. Whatever I have in the way of a cold, flu, etc., is lingering and it just makes me even more afraid.
Helpful - 0
Seroconversion symptoms (ARS) do not last that long.  You could test any time now with a 4th generation test to know your status.
Oh, sorry - I misread.  I thought you were saying you were testing in 30 more days, not 30 days post-event.
Avatar universal
Well, I'm still waiting to take the 28 day duo. I went to our local testing center the other day and they do the rapid finger stick test, which I thought would suffice, and they wouldn't do it because they said their test only detects after 90 days post exposure.

So now I'm waiting on a lab order, my anxiety is through the roof and my gentleman friend has basically ghosted me.

I'm too old for this....
Helpful - 0
188761 tn?1584567620
You risk was low. A brief exposure with no ejaculation certainly minimizes the risk plus you must focus on the fact that not everyone around is HIV positive, also it's irrational to assume your partner is positive.

I strongly feel that you are going to be okay, you are just worried about this little venture that you had outside of your monogamous relationship and your emotions are a bit jumbled up leading to this scare.

Sex is natural and not everyone having unprotected intercourse ends up being positive. It's obvious that you must have called your partner numerous times and tried asking about HIV / STDs, he is pestered, it doesn't mean anything else.

Try not to think about this all the time, avoid reading about it on the internet, just get the test and forget about this.

Good luck.
Helpful - 0
Thank you, Mike. I didn't venture outside of a monogamous relationship though - I've been divorced for a while now.  And I'm freaking out because I found out my "friend" has a wife (knew nothing about that until this week!) so in my mind, he is untrustworthy and who knows who he was with before me and if he was safe.   And we had another encounter in early August and again, we experienced condom failure (I think I'm buying the wrong kind!)

I'll get my test, and if its positive, I'm out on this life.
My apologies for missing to read the part where you state that you have been divorced.

I want to reassure you once again that your risk was low. I and other volunteers here on this forum are available for you to speak to. You are clearly seeming to be very anxious at this point, you can visit a counselor for seeking some help to get you through the waiting period.

Condom failures are possibly happening due to incorrect usage. The air from the tip of the condom needs to be released, there are plenty of DIY images available on the internet, you can look through it.

Avatar universal
The chances that your partner is HIV positive to be able to infect you in the first place is slim. Most people don't have it unless they are in a high risk group, such as men who have random unprotected sexual encounters with other men. It's highly likely that your test will be negative and you're totally fine. I would in fact be shocked if you end up with HIV from this.

However please seek out some counseling to help you overcome your suicidal thoughts because it's not healthy to let your mind go in that direction. You should call the suicide prevention hotline to speak with someone 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text 741741.
Helpful - 0
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the HIV Prevention Community

Top HIV Answerers
366749 tn?1544695265
Karachi, Pakistan
370181 tn?1595629445
Arlington, WA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Condoms are the most effective way to prevent HIV and STDs.
PrEP is used by people with high risk to prevent HIV infection.
Can I get HIV from surfaces, like toilet seats?
Can you get HIV from casual contact, like hugging?
Frequency of HIV testing depends on your risk.
Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) may help prevent HIV infection.