[Question #1938] Risk assessment

45 months ago
Good morning doctors I have a couple issues and questions. Recently I went to a local massage parlor because I was told it helped with stress no big deal was a good massage felt ok at the end the woman offered me extra services I rejected for I am a married man. Anyways well exactly 18 days after this massage I came down with this heavy cough real bad congestion some kind of rash kinda all over the body extreme fatigue and it just cleared up today mostly still have the severe fatigue and also my wife has come down with the same symptoms I'm curious to know if their is any chance of contracting anything in this or is this just some sort of flu and cold I also have swollen lymp nodes in the neck that have not gone down although me or my wife have not had any sort of fever. The exposure or massage was on march 13th symptoms started on march 31st and have held up until roughly today with still a minor cough with flem and plugged nose and the fatigue im worried could defiantly use some advice and some questions answered doctors thank you for your time also I have been tested and also my wife before we had our first newborn who is now 8 months old
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
45 months ago
Welcome to the Forum.  I'll be happy to comment in the hopes of relieving any concern you might have about the massage you had.  Having declined the "extras" offered, there is no risk whatsoever to you of having acquired an STI of any sort.  While infections like the common cold and other viral infections are commonly transmitted from person to person through casual contact (did you know that most colds are transmitted by hand to hand contact?), STIs are not.  Further the time between your massage and the onset of your symptoms is longer than would be typical for an infection acquired at the massage parlor.  Rather, it is more likely that you acquired your cold more recently through your activities of daily living.  the short period between the onset of your symptoms and your wife's further supports this.   Finally symptoms of a runny nose, cough and fatigue are more typical of "every day" viral infections that most of us get from time to time than anything you might have gotten in the course of your massage.  I see no reason to test or to worry that your current illness is related in any way to you massage.

I hope these comments are helpful.  If there are further question or any of this is unclear, please let me know.  EWH
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45 months ago
Thanks for the reply doctor I did go look on the CDC website concerning the situation I did forget to mention to you I did have some irritated / broken skin / scratches on my back and legs and does it make a difference that I was fully nude during also she never touched my penis or anus on anyway she stayed fully clothed throughout the whole session but the CDC states that hiv transmission can happen through contact of broken skin I wish they would clarify that a bit more and apparently my symptoms of whatever is going on fell into the so called ars symptoms timeline I was wondering if my symptoms are related to that and if you could clarify that I'm not questioning your response it's more of a matter of trying to understand your point and what the CDC is trying to say with that 
45 months ago
Dr hook are you still their was seeing if you had a response to my last question
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
45 months ago
Please be patient.  We do not man the site 24/7.

Thanks as well for the clarification.  The scratches and abrasions present on your back do not change my assessment.  The CDC's comments about the potential risk related to broken skin is theoretical and the fact is neither of us has ever seen or heard of someone who acquired HIV in this way.  By virtue of being a government agency and not being able to individualize answers, the CDCs advice tends to be rather non-specific and to sometime lead people who visit their web site astray. 

As far as your symptoms are concerned, neither a productive cough nor a runny nose are suggestive of the ARS.  Further, the classical ARS is a severe illness characterized by high fevers, sore throat, and muscle and joint aches as well as, in some cases, diarrhea and/or a whole body skin rash.  When it occurs, people are sick enough to be put in the hospital. 

From what you have said, I am still quite confident that the events you describe did not put you at any risk for HIV or other STI/  EWH
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45 months ago
I appreciate your brief and helpful response dr on Monday it will be 4 weeks I do plan on testing for all std and hiv for my own reassurance even though you have given me that when would be a good time for the most accurate results so I can put this completely behind me even though I feel I didn't do anything wrong 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
45 months ago
At 4 weeks your tests for gonorrhea, chlamydia and HIV (if tested with a 4th generation, combination antigen/antibody test) will all be definitive.  Syphilis testing will likewise be highly reliable.  Testing for herpes with blood tests is not recommended as there are false positives which occur relatively commonly. there is no recommended test for HPV in men. 

This is my third reply to your questions.  I hope I have been helpful. this thread will be closed later today.  EWH
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45 months ago
Thank you dr hook