I had a very low risk since I only did oral w/condom and kissing. Now this is my 1st hook up ever and my 3rd sexual experience so im not sexually active and I've never had an HIV test before so this raises my anxiety. During oral came in my mouth condom on of course but it still got me paranoid. I also had a 2days old tiny cut above my top 2 front teeth since I noticed the cut days before. In the 1st two wks I was super paranoid thinking I might be (+).

Wk2 and 4dys- I started to get knee aches and 80% of them were on right knee, there were no other muscle aches except stiff neck a few times (still capable of walking and running, the aching didn't hurt or anything just tingly feeling in knee)

Wk2 and 5days I believe- I started to get a dry throat, not dry mouth but a dry feeling in the throat which gave me arge to swallow like when you eat not swallowing saliva (no sore throat, rough sound of speech ,dry coughs, or mouth uclers and etc.)

Wk 4- Both of these symptoms started to disappear but my anxiety dropped a bit too wasn't the same as in the first 2wks

Wk 4- Since I was still pretty paranoid I Googled the symptoms and swollen nodes was one of the symptoms so I did a body check and noticed a bump above my adams apple and is a bit to the right. It moves when I rub my finger around it. No pain when I apply pressure and the skin texture around it looks normal. It isn't noticeable and its sorta just a bump thats there doesnt bother me in anyway physically.

Wk7- I noticed this bump exactly when it appeared since after the 1st one I've become very paranoid bout my neck. Like the 1st this one doesn't hurt when i apply pressure and skin texture looks normal to me. Considering the fact that its a few inches below my left ear it isnt noticeable.

FYI- When both of the bumps appeared I was fine in health expect for my mental state thats a bit ugh.

Im writing this from the 9th wk and let me just say that there has not been one day in these last 63 days that I haven't though bout my exposure. I feel like im at a perfect equilibrium where im having a self to self conflict. I tell myself im positive sometimes and the next day I'll say I'm probably neg. I still look the same as usual but when im alone my mind is always wrapped around this. I say im not (+) the risk was too low and I used protection and he did say he's negative yet I had these 3 symptoms and the bumps/nodes it what really hit me most since ive never had any before I believe. I've never been this paranoid in my life for real no joke and its scaring me and pissing me off at the same time.

Please dont just say I shouldn't worry and thats its a low risk but if I had these symptoms it must definitely mean something especially the 2 tiny bumps.

Q1) Can these be the only symptoms for HIV?

Q2) Can anxiety cause me to have swollen node/bumps and the other symptoms?

Q3) Do you believe I possibly could be HIV positive?
Hello and thank you for contacting us at the AIDS Vancouver Helpline, we're happy to be here to help answer your questions.

It sounds like you are very distressed about your risk of acquiring HIV from your experience a while back, and I am very sorry to hear that you have been experiencing this discomfort for a very long time. I am writing to you here in hope to help you feel less discomfort and distress by providing your up-to-date information that we have here at AIDS Vancouver.

Thank you for providing us a thorough description of your experience, and I will answer your questions as listed:

Q1) Can these be the only symptoms for HIV?

We do *not* look at any symptoms as indicators of HIV because symptoms can look like symptoms of any other viral infections - such as the flu. It seems like you are experiencing a lot of discomfort from the bumps that you find by your neck, but I suggest you partner with a healthcare professional as they may be indicators of other health conditions.

Q2) Can anxiety cause me to have swollen node/bumps and the other symptoms?

We are not trained as healthcare professionals so this is a question that I cannot answer. However, like mentioned above, partnering with a healthcare professional may help understand the cause of your swollen nodes.

Q3) Do you believe I possibly could be HIV positive?

You are correct that your experience of giving oral sex is considered *low risk* but your use of condom greatly reduces the risk even more.

The only way to know your HIV status is through testing.
HIV testing is available widely, and they are high in accuracy as well. Antibody tests (3rd Generation EIA test, Rapid/Point-of-Care test, 4th Generation EIA Test) detects 95% of infections within 4-6 weeks, and gives your conclusive results at 12 weeks. Which means that if you get tested 12 weeks after your risk exposure, you will know your HIV status for sure.

If your worry from not knowing your HIV status is causing you distress, HIV tests are available to give you an answer. If you are in Canada, here is a link where you can find an HIV testing site nearby your location:

If you are not in Canada or not sure of where to go, please email us with your location and we can help you find testing site that you can consider (information will be kept confidential).

I hope that this information helped you understand HIV better and help lessen your distress. For more information about HIV you can also visit our website at or other recommended websites such as or

Thank you, and all the best,


Helpline Volunteer

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