Anonymous
Hi! I’d like to ask for help regarding the situation that has happened to me almost 2 months ago. I am sorry that my message is long, I just wanted to be clear with my situation and my concern.

I am from the Philippines, several months ago I had an encounter with a massage therapist in a spa (breast sucking and handjob). Felt guilty for what I have done and because of rising stress and anxiety that I might get an HIV or other STD. I decided to go to one of our government social hygiene clinic. I went there several times to get tested, first was 8 weeks after the spa incident, then two weeks after the 1st test (10 weeks), then the third and last one, was 2 weeks after the 2nd test (12 weeks), thankfully ALL resulted to NON-REACTIVE (kit that was used is SD Bioline HIV 1/2 3.0).

However, there was this incident on the 3rd and last time (12 weeks) that I went to the clinic. The medtech was kind of hesitant to do another test for me since I already took 2 tests just a few weeks ago. She adviced me to just go back after 2 more weeks for me to get tested (which is 1 month gap after my 2nd test). I insisted that I want to get tested for my peace of mind because that time, that was already my 12th week since the spa incident. The medtech was still kind of hesitant and a bit irate, but we proceeded with the test. After taking blood sample from me, the medtech told me that there is another blood sample that they have which they got from one of their patients who was tested HIV positive, she showed me how the procedure is being done. She said that they don’t normally do it with other patients, however, whe wants to show it to me for me to see the accuracy of the kit. Maybe the Medtech thought that the reason why I keep on coming back to get tested is because I am not fully convinced with the kit and procedure. The Kit where my blood sample was resulted to a Non-Reactive, and the second kit where the blood sample of another patient was resulted to Reactive.

I felt very happy to know that time I got tested Non-Reactive, however, that same night, suddenly crossed my mind that there may be a risk of being exposed from HIV/STD since there is a presence of a blood sample of a person with HIV in the area where I got tested. That night I was not able to sleep again, the next day I went back to the clinic and asked about what I felt about the procedure. She assured me that she has done the test with utmost care, like with other patients, the syringe and needle that they used to take my blood sample was new and has never been used for other procedures nor other patients. She even told me that their job is to help, and not to spread the virus.

Almost 2 months have passed, but Im still having some stress and anxiety that the syringe and needle that was used to me may have been contaminated with HIV or other STD. Even thinking that the Medtech might have intentionally injected some blood with HIV/ STD before getting blood samples from me since she was kind of irate that time. I apologize for thinking this way, I am stressed and still feeling some anxiety because it’s been more than a month now when I felt some lymph node in my neck (2 in the left, and 1 at the right) with a size of a bean. I already took antibiotics as prescribed by the doctor, but the lymph nodes are still there (they are not painful though).

Was there any cases reported that a person got infected with HIV or STD after getting tested from an HIV testing center? Are the lymph nodes an indication or symptoms of an HIV/ STD? Do I need to get tested again? I feel like going through hell whenever I go to the social hygiene clinic because of stress and anxiety of getting tested. What should I do? Hope you’ll be able to help me. Thank you in advance.
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Anonymous
Hi there and thank you for contacting the AIDS Vancouver Online Helpline.

As you may already know, HIV tests are considered to have conclusive results when taken 12 weeks (3 months) or more following exposure. This means that the results of the tests you took after your sexual experience can be considered to be conclusive.

Being in the same room as HIV+ blood does not put you at risk of acquiring HIV. When HIV in bodily fluids is exposed to the air it becomes non-transmissible. Any blood you may have come into contact with at the testing site (although it is unlikely) would have first been exposed to the air and would not contain transmissible HIV. In addition to this, HIV transmission in a healthcare setting is extremely uncommon as many precautions are taken including using sterile equipment and safe storage of samples.

For more information about HIV you can visit CATIE.ca or the AIDS Vancouver website.

I hope this information helps to answer your questions.

Isla (Volunteer)

AIDS Vancouver Helpline/Online

Monday to Friday 10am-4pm (PST)

Private and Confidential
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