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Concerned I'm going through acute stages-- please help
An_245585 posted:
Hello, I had unprotected sex with a college student on May 7th and I'm worried that I may be going through the acute HIV infection stages now. Two days ago (Thurs 5/24) I woke up and had an overall not-well feeling and just felt like I needed rest. I took an hour nap around 4 and I woke up feeling much worse-- like my body got hit by a freight train. I then developed a sore throat, one non-painful swollen node on the left side of my neck, overall body soreness, a hard to blow out snot (but I can suck it into my mouth), and general "out of it" feeling. Someone asked if I had gotten mono and then I started doing searches and the mono-like illness seems to be HIV related.

I slept most of the day on Friday and woke up on Saturday feeling basically back to normal, but the swollen node hasn't gone down yet. One other things is that Thursday night I sweated a lot during sleep but was also covered in four blankets and wore two layers of clothes to bed. Last night (Fri) I wore normal clothes to bed and just had a sheet and blanket but I still sweat a lot that left the bed wet. I didn't have much to eat yesterday but I drank a lot of water and gatorade throughout the day-- maybe 130 oz total.

The only other cause I can think of is that I went for a long run in the hot weather Wed night and felt like I overdid it. Half way through my run I stopped to go to the bathroom and I became very dizzy as I was peeing. I had gotten sick once before a couple years ago when I overdid a run but it was just a sore throat and a runny nose for about a week. I don't want to minimize the situation by making up excuses for the reasons, but that's what I originally chalked it up to when I first got really tired on Thursday.

Please help. I'm worried that it is symptoms of initial HIV infection, but only having the symptons last 2 days seems short. Any opinions on this matter would help. Thank you so much.
georgiagail responded:
Sorry; we can't diagnose HIV either through the internet or through symptoms.

If you remain concerned you can ask your partner to get tested or you can wait until the 90 day mark for you to get tested.

If you cannot wait that long a screening test done at about 4 weeks after an exposure will give you a pretty good idea of your status. Roughly 95 percent of newly infected folks will have enough antibodies present to be picked up by current testing methods one month post exposure.

An_245585 replied to georgiagail's response:
I'm not asking for a diagnosis. I'm just asking for a general opinion on the matter.
Nieciedo replied to An_245585's response:
You are correct that a mere 2 days of acute HIV infection symptoms is too short. When these symptoms occur, they look and feel just like the flu and behave like it, too: lasting a week or two before going away.

HIV cannot be diagnosed by symptoms and symptoms are of no help in determining risk. This is because people can be infected and not have symptoms and, more often, people can have symptoms and not be infected.

Since you did have unprotected sex with a person whose status is unknown, then that is a potential risk and so testing would be in order. However, HIV is not easy to transmit and you don't know that your partner even had the virus to begin with.

I would not worry about these symptoms, but I would recommend getting tested on or after June 6 for a preliminary result that might give you some peace of mind. A test on or after August 5 will be conclusive.

An_245585 replied to Nieciedo's response:
Thanks for your reply Dan. I talked to the girl I had sex with this morning and she seemed somewhat offended at my question and gave me the standard tested every 6 months. I would not consider her a person that would sleep around so I do find her comment to be somewhat believable. She said the last time she was specifically tested for HIV was in March.

I feel pretty tired today but went to be late and woke up early. I was reading up on depletion of sodium levels due to exercise and that's why I initially chalked up my symptoms to that- they include fatigue and dizziness. I can't find out how long it takes for the body to reach equilibrium again though. I hope that's all it is.

I gargled salt water on Saturday and it took care of the sore throat within a matter of minutes. Lasted a total of 24 hours maybe, but could have lasted much shorter if I gargled salt water immediately. I normally sweat during the night and felt that last night I was at a normal sweating level. The thick snot is not as bothersome as before, but still just hanging the remnants after a cold. By no means am I 100%, but the "condition" seemed to last from Thur-Sat and now I'm just working on getting rest and getting better.

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