[Question #672] Dr. Handsfield mistook me for/said I was someone else. Wish to rectify this

47 months ago
Dr. Handsfield thought I was a married man who sleeps with escorts, in his previous reply. This is not true and I don't know why this was assumed.  As I mentioned to Dr. Hook, I am a single straight male who has had 5-10 female protected vaginal sexual partners in the last 2-3 years. Admittedly, some were more short term and some I had been dating for many months. 

I have the utmost respect for Drs. Handsfield and Hook, and your advice on these forums has guided how I approach my sex life, so I felt compelled to pay again and post. I just wanted to make sure I am represented properly, because I take the advice from both of you to heart.

 I am very scared of HIV so all of this is enough to convince me to revert back to avoiding penetrative sex until finding the person I will marry. 

I just want to put all of this behind me, do the right thing and move forward. But between Dr. Hook's assurance that I had a sexually healthy approach to sex that will keep me protected, and Dr. Handsfield's statement that I made a lifestyle choice that has put me at risk, I am really confused.  I am also pretty bummed out. 

What would you do if you were in my shoes at this point? 

I was planning to test in June during a primary care check and because that would allow a sufficient window for syphilis from my last episode of protected sex and I could do everything else (HIV, gonorrhea, chlamydia)  at that time too. From a medical standpoint should I test sooner? 
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
47 months ago
Sorry I mis-read part of your previous message. Your original question included "If I find myself in a committed relationship, what is the best way to ensure both my partner and I don't have genital herpes before ultimately engaging in UNprotected vaginal sex?", to which I replied -- I think it created a mindset that made me think you are currently in a relationship.

However, I have carefully reviewed the other thread, and this is a minor point that makes no difference in my assessment of your risks and my advice about testing for HIV and/or other STDs. If you decide to be tested at this time, a urine test for gonorrhea and chlamydia is conclusive any time more than 4-5 days after the last exposure; HIV testing at 4-6 weeks, depending on the particular test that is done; and syphilis at 6 weeks. But what would I do at this point? Nothing. I would just plan on having these same tests routinely about once a year and would expect the results to be negative.

I won't have any other comments or advice, and repetative anxiety driven questions are not permitted on the forum. So please do not start any new threads about these exposures and your plans for testing. If further questions remain, carefully re-read all the replies you have had in your previous threads.

HHH, MD
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