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Scared I have HIV

Question: 

I am a 16 year old female and 8 weeks ago I has unprotected sex with a male of the same age as a drunken mistake. We had sex twice in one night, the first time we used a condom and the second time we didn't.

For the past 3 days I have suffered from a very mild fever which included;
mild headache, slight muscle pains, pain in the back of eyes when I move them and night sweats. I also had dierrea for the first day and now the fever is almost gone I have noticed my eyes are very very slightly starting to yellow. I hardly ever get fevers so I got worried and searched the symptoms on the internet to see acute HIV cause fever like symptoms which really got me worried. I don't think I have the HIV rash as my rash doesn't look like that because it is on my right chest/shoulder and they are little red spots with some that have puss in them (they do not itch) also the rash flared up while I was abroad in Spain for 2 weeks, a week ago. I got bitten by Mosquitos but I don't think that has anything to do with the fever.

I know I need to get checked out and I will do very soon but just wanted to see what you have to say. Also how long does it take to get infected by HIV after unprotected sex and how long does it usually take acute HIV symptoms to show up after unprotected sex?

Answer: 

Hi there, thanks for contacting the AIDS Vancouver helpline with your HIV related questions and concerns. We're happy to help!

Good job for taking the initiative to use a condom when you had sex, but to optimally protect yourself, make sure you use a condom every time! It's the best way to protect from STI's such as HIV. Check out smartsexresource.com for more great information on safe sex!

Unprotected vaginal sex is considered to be a High Risk activity for HIV transmission. This means that most cases of HIV are transmitted through actions such as this. That being said, it's important to note that HIV can only be transmitted from someone who's HIV+. There's a common misconception that you can just get HIV through sexual activity, even if the other person doesn't have HIV! I just wanted to make this point clear, because even though it's a high risk activity, and we always advocate for safe sex and condom use, if the other person doesn't have HIV, then it's impossible to acquire HIV from that situation.

Acute HIV symptoms usually occur around 2-6 weeks post exposure. We don't normally discuss HIV symptoms since they're vague and can mimic other viral infections like the flu, so we tend to rely on HIV testing, as that's the only way to be certain of your status.

I would recommend you get tested for HIV and STI's, as you did have a high risk exposure, but we also recommend that all sexually active individuals get annual HIV and STI testing as part of their health maintenance.

For more information about all things HIV, please visit Avert.org

I hope this helped!

Sincerely,

Christina

AIDS Vancouver Online Helpline

helpline.aidsvancouver.org

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