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Avatar universal

HIV Testing and Anxiety

Dr. Thank you so much for providing your expert opinions on HIV testing. I am so concerned of my HIV status that it has caused me to go into a deep depression/anxiety to the  point of attempted suicide. Please help me answer the followng questions.

I am 27 yr old heterosexual male and from the US. On October 9 2005 I was diagnosed with HSV-1 on my genitals, I can only assume that I recieved it through unprotected oral sex. I have never had an STD prior to that. I began to extensively research STD's and eventually came across HIV. Based on the symptoms that I read about, I self diagnosed myself with the disease. This is what triggered the depresion/anxiety.

December 20, 2005 I called my mom to say good bye because I was going to commited suicide because I believed I was infected with HIV. She flew down immediately and I was taken to my PCP the next day for testing. The test was admisnistered by Labcorp EIA second generation and came back negative. The last time I had sex (unprotected/unknown HIV status) was on October 19 2005. This makes the "window period" approxmately 8 weeks.

I felt completely relieved after reading the numerous post regarding the test window but I continue to have thoughts about still having the disease. Things such as HIV-2 (not tested for) and late seroconversion are a  few lingering thoughts. I am at the three month window period and extremely scared to get retested.

My questions are:

1) I know you have mentioned the the 6 week window period is virually 100% reliable. Do I need to take a three month test? Or can I accept my 8 weeks negative test as conclusive? My doctor told me to get testing every three months for a year after the exposure. I cannot continue on for another year in the condition that I am in.

2) I was also diagnosed with Chronic Prostatis (non bacterial).
Is this considered a STD? Can I pass it on to other's?

3) I believe HSV1 genitally is uncommon as there is not much research on it. Can I pass this to others? I haven't had an outbreak since the initial one.

4) I know its extremely rare but do you think I am at risk for HIV 2? I had one incident of unprotected sex with a girl who lived in Mexico and two other girls (unprotected) from China and Korea.

This disease is ruining my life as I can't seem to get it out of my head. I have put my family thru so much and I just need some reassurance that I am OK so I can continue on with my life.

I really appreciate your help and god bless everyone.
13 Responses
239123 tn?1267651214
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Far and away the most important advice I can give is that you visit a mental health professional, immediately; ask your primary care doctor for a referral.  You need to deal with your obvious depression and the unreasoned, truly irrational level of fear and anxiety you are showing. It is not my role, and I accept no responsibility, to be the source of reassurance you are OK and can continue with your life (paraphrasing your words).  My replies are brief, because I want you to get proper care and not dwell on my responses.

1) Follow your doctor's advice. Eight weeks is highly reliable, but you need to find and accept the advice of a provider you trust, and not put your faith in an online source.

2) Prostatitis is not sexually acquired or transmitted.

3) Most people with genital herpes due to HSV-1 have few or no recurrences and do not transmit it sexually to partners.  Search for other threads on genital HSV-1 infection.

4) You don't describe your sexual history in enough detail for me to judge your risk of genital herpes due to HSV-2.

Please do not post any follow-up questions; I will not reply.  This is in your best interest, in my judgement.

Best wishes-- HHH, MD
Avatar universal
We all know not to put our lives in an online source. But when you support the idea of testing every 3 months out to one year following a potential exposure, your credibility here on this forum is seriously in question. You have repeatedly expressed that a 3 month window is more than enough time and that just about everyone will show Pos. within 4-8 weeks. The CDC says only very very few will take up to 6 months. After 6 months, they consider you conclusive. You now support up to one year!!
WOW!!!
Avatar universal
wow...okay im scared now...who should i listen to?....need your response doc.
Avatar universal
well i have read his response again...i am highly doubt that someone would develope HIV after testing negative after 6 months.....certainly this guy had put himself at risk..no doubt about that..and like doctor said he is not a psyciatric...he is proffesional in HIV testing...and G-Man...i got tested yesterday came out negative and the lady who performed the test..she has been doing this for 20 years and she told me the same thing as doc....4-6 weeks ...and if you get test after 90 days it is 100% conclusive....lets talk about cdc...and other company...well ..like it has been said before here...it is set up by lawyers....and this DOC HHH has been doing this for 30 years...he speaks from experience.....and trust me symptoms does not equal disease...but the only way to find out is by gettin tested and i think 90 days should be conclusive....take care and good luck to both of you
79258 tn?1190634010
The original poster is/has been suicidal, which shows a pretty intense level of anxiety and depression. Dr. Handsfield is simply acknowledging the depth of this poster's concern, and saying that this poster needs to find someone he can trust IN PERSON. He is NOT saying that he should get tested again a year later; I think your own anxiety is causing you to interpret his comments as such.

To the original poster and anyone: If money is an issue for therapy and/or medication, most areas have community services boards that offer free or low cost services. There are also likely therapists in your area who will work on a sliding scale. In addition, for immediate help you can always call 1-800-suicide, 24/7.
Avatar universal
He wasn't agreeing with testing out to a year. The situation as presented is obviously best not handled through an online message board. There are earlier tests available but not as well accepted.
Avatar universal
so you are saying that oraquick would not be conclusive after 3 months or 6 months?
Avatar universal
I do think that Dr. HHH was being very sympathetic with the poster and believe me I too am very sympathetic. Anyone of us in the process of being tested experience alot of up and down stress and anxiety among other things such as symptoms. I realize the Doc did not want to over step the line by becoming an interference with the posters Doc. However I just figured that as sure as Doc HHH is about the reliability of the window period, that he would have enlightened him thus relieving an already heavy burden by stating his professional opinion and facts regarding the window period. This would have been a huge help to him. I have heard of GP's recommending testing up to one year, but this is surely overkill, but very thorough, so I'm OK with that. I'm sure the poster already knows about the window period and it's high % of conversion by 6-8 weeks. His 8 week Neg. test should absolutely not change. Even the very conservative CDC says 97% show within 3 months, not at 3 months, but within 3 months. That would lead me to believe that in order for the CDC to have a 97% cutoff at 3 months would mean that there are very very few positives left after 8 weeks and to be safe call it 3 months for 97%
Boy I tell ya, someone out there has to be working on a much, much earlier detection test. I mean really, at home pregnancy tests are 99.9% accurate at 30 days and some earlier than that and now in most places you don't need it confirmed by your Dr. through a blood test!! After more than 25 years of this epidemic it's just ridiculous there is not an earlier test!!
Avatar universal
OK as far as early testing goes I had 3 PCR tests done at 28, 49 and 84 days all Neg. but the CDC and FDA does not approve for screening and not one single physician will consider a person conclusive at 28 days or any # of days without Elisa at 3-6 months. But the PCR tests did give me a strong sense of relief. There is a strong likelyhood of false positives which could be devestating to a person who is at 28 days and will then have to wait for another couple of months perhaps to find out for sure if it was a false positive by standard tests. The FDA does however approve this test on pools of donated blood only, probably because there is'nt a name associated with it, so if it's false pos. it does'nt matter. I also know that the adult film industry uses PCR exclusively for screening every month for their actors. The CDC reported that one actor had 2 previous Neg. PCR tests done and then had typical but severe ARS that lasted 2 weeks. He got better and did his shoot for a film and went on to infect 3 other actors all of which showed pos. at 31 days after exposure with him. This actors 3rd PCR finally showed pos. which also confirmed his illness was ARS. However I do believe that this actor could have been infected just before his 1st test and the 2nd test just missed coming up with a pos., but did show pos. on the 3rd. I think this does point out the test does do well. Maybe this is the early detection test we have been waiting for especially since they have detections down to as low as 10 copies now. Now they just have to simplify this test, because they say it is very labor intensive and requires alot of skill in reading the results.
Avatar universal
Oraquik is an Elisa test and I do believe it is a 3rd generation test. So yes Oraquik would be conclusive. It is also FDA Approved and strongly supported by the CDC. Accuracy of this test is I think 99.7% There have been false positives reported, but no false negatives that I've heard of. If there had been reports of false negatives the FDA would have pulled the test by now.
Avatar universal
Hello...hopefully someone can put to ease my mind, actually my girlfriends mind! About 4 years ago i had a one-time encounter with a random girl from a bar. one thing led to another and oral sex was performed and received by both, but no intercourse. I made the mistake of mentioning this to my g/f. She insists that i get tested for stds, especially hiv. it's been 4 years. wouldn't something have come up if i had been infected with anything??!! i have since been in the hospital for a 1 year stint with a headache issue and had a complete cbc blood test twice? wouldn't something also show up there? I mean really, i'm sure this is wasting everyone's time but for the peace of mind it will give me i must post! thanks!
Avatar universal
I've had some unprotected oral sex with some transexuals.My first time was in september of 2003.I got tested for hiv and was negative in february 2004(5months).Then i was tested again in april 2004,august 2004 and march 2005(all negative).My next time i was with a ts was may 2005 and july 2005 and december 2005.These four times i had unprotected oral sex.They were all escorts but no *** or blood.They all said they were negative except the first one.I didn't know her hiv status.I also either got ****** or ****** them with a condom.what are my chances of hiv transmission.Can You get hiv from saliva.I am very concerned .My mouth has been very dry last 3 weeks and some red bumps near my genitals but they were full of either puss or blood.I have been eaten badly the last 4 months.I don't know if i feel like **** because of my sedentery life style or some of these episodes.I also noticed some red bumps on my thighs and red colored really small dots on my thumb.Are these stds or am i just stressed out.There was never any condom breakage or any other symptoms.What are the chances of hiv transmission with these ts escorts with blowjobs only lasting about five to ten minutes.
Avatar universal
I have also had some tingling feeling in my left arm that comes and goes.No diarhea but have had changes in bowel movements.I have lost some weight,but only about 3 pounds.I have been on a diet.I have looked all over the web for different symptoms and transmission but it seems everybody has a different view.I would love to have your points of view doctor.It's been about 3 months since the last time for oral sex without condoms.
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