[Question #785] Symptoms persisiting - extension 370

53 months ago

My tongue gives me  a weird feeling ( burnt /scalded like feeling with some burning  and roughness) on the papillae ( around 8=10 ) in the tongue tip. These papillaes  generally have a white / pale pink top. This is persisting for more than 6 months now.  I have scraped them hard but they dont bleed. They give me some discomfort when I talk. I have now developed a habit of feeling them through the day by rubbing  the tongue againt the mouth top. Is this causing the discomfort ?  I also have white phelgm down the throat

1) Is this persistent mild thrush ? I read that mild thrush is quite common in HIV patients. Is it true? Also if would have been thrush it should it not have spread to other areas during this time ?


2) Is this due to HIv and do i need to test again?   I had done 3 tests after 18 months of exposure - 1 rapid, 1 ECLIA and 1 ELISA ( ELFA test) - All negative . Do I need to retest. I had asked you question extension 370


3) How are the general thrush symptoms in HIV ? Is it very painful or mild ?

Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
53 months ago

Welcome to the Forum.  I'll be pleased to help although my answers to your questions may not follow the sequence that you have asked them in.  As I read your questions, it appears that you are quite concerned that you might have HIV and that a manifestation of the HIV infection that you believe you have may be related to the abnormalities you describe, concerned that they could be thrush.  I will approach your questions from that perspective. 

First, I note that you provide no context for me to help you assess your risk for HIV.  While risk certainly does not equal infection, knowing about your perceived risk may help me to put your questions into context. 

Second, you report that you have had three negative tests over an 18 month period.  These results virtually assure you that yoAny single test more than 6-8 weeks after an exposure are reliable evidence that you do not have HIV and three tests make this completely sure.  You do not have HIV.

Finally, what you describe in your tongue sounds normal to me.  Thrush must be diagnosed by direct examination by a trained clinician but what you suggest in no way suggests thrush.  Thus can be quite uncomfortable. 

I hope this helps.  your symptoms do not sound at all like thrush and you can be sure that you do not have HIV.   I hope these comments are helpful to you.. EWH

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52 months ago

Hi Doc,

I had actually asked the question 370 desctibing my risk 4 months back.I had a sex encounter with a sex worker 2 years back. I used a condom for the same and not sure if the condom broke during the act.

Symptoms and question :

1. My wife developed a bout of fever, sore throat and rash within 3 months of mylow risk exposure. The rash appeared on the 3rd day of fever and lasted 2 days.

2 I have described my symptom above which you have ruled out as thrush


3. Afte a year my wife had started getting tingling pains in her hands , legs and body which has somewhat reduced now and rarely happens.But she has developed pain in her left heel and not able to walk. She gets pain and numbness in her right thigh ? We did the diabetes and b12 test and Vit D test. The vit D result was low but diabetes and B12 was fine. The doctor prescribed her ultrasound therapy on the feet and doubted Plantar Fascitis for the left heel. The problem still persists. It is nueropathy and is this linked to HIV ? what can be causing this then ? She has no /zero risk exposure outside the above risk I have outlined above due to me. Please can you advise how quickly nueropathy onsets after infection. Please advise and help me with if I need to more HIV tests. Please help what should I do. Can I move on forgeting HIV . Me and my wife are both 43 years

Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
52 months ago

Thanks for referring me back to your earlier post.  It was helpful for me to review it and to understand that these concerns represent persisting concerns rather than a new problem.  As I mentioned before your wife's febrile illness was far milder than the symptoms of the ARS are and there is virtually no reason to continue to worry about HIV in this setting.  As for your white tongue, remember that your doctors suggested that this was glossitis, not thrush - the differentiation is not difficult and glossitis is a non-specific term used to describe irritation of the tongue. It can have many causes.  HIV is not a concern.

As for your wife's neuropathic symptoms, neuropathy has many causes and much of it is non-specific. When it occurs in persons with HIV, it occurs in the late stages of disease among person with far advance disease. 

It is clear to me that you are being profoundly impacted by guilt related to your dalliance outside of your marriage and are continually wondering whether or not you acquired HIV related to it.  You did not, further testing is a waste of time, just as is trying to attribute any and all otherwise unexplained health problems which occur to undetected HIV.  This is not good for your mental health and likely is impacting your relationships and health in ways that may not be completely apparent to you.  Rather than worrying about HIV, I urge you to seek counseling and talk through your feelings of guilt and the anxiety that they cause.  It may help to print out this and our earlier exchange to refer to.  I say this out of concern for you.  You do not have HIV and have no reason to be worried about it at this time.  EWH

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