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Root canal, fatigue, burning sore throat, lymph node swollen. Is this infection?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 1773 Questions
I had a root canal at my dentist and think the nurse who is my enemy (outside world) gave me a dirty needle for anesthesia. Also the drill was not sterilized according to other staffers. 5 days after my visit I started experiencing the worst fatigue of my life. This continues today (16 days now) About 5 days after the fatigue started I started with a burning sore throat, slight lymph node swelling in the neck and now at day 16 an ulcer on my hard palate as well as a very low grade fever. 99.1. What do you all make of this? Do you think I could be infected? I never experienced anything like this in my life. This nurse REALLY hates me trust me. She is evil. Its not like we are teens either (in our 50s) but I truly feel she is capable of this. What are the chances that she could have done this and that I could be infected either via the dirty handpiece (which probably sat for 15 or so hours since I was the first patient or via a subcutaneuous oral injection of anesthesia with a small gauge needle????? PLEASE HELP ME I FEEL SO AWFUL AND I AM SO SCARED!
Posted Sat, 7 Jul 2012 in Dental Health
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 4 hours later

First I know that you are suspecting some germ would have entered the body causing these new symptoms. A simple test would confirm such infection called Complete blood count. If you are suspecting HIV, you should still wait for 2 weeks to get ELISA for HIV done at the lab. HIV infection would not cause symptoms so early. The symptoms which you describe are not typical as we see in clinical practice. You might have read on the internet that this is how HIV presents but all is not true. So for now forget about HIV transmission.

Fatigue, sorethroat, lymph node swelling and ulcer on the hard palate may not mean a severe or deleterious malady. You can try with LISTERINE gargles thrice a day in warm water with 1: 10 dilutions. The germs are killed. You may use lozenges to reduce the swelling in the throat.

We will report about the nurse practices later when you get better. If you start thinking about it you will lose mental peace. So I just advice you to get better first.

According to the standards laid and taught to the health professionals they have to maintain strict hygiene ( aseptic conditions) during any procedure. This way they should not use equipment which are unsterile during any procedure. If such a clinic or facility is monitored and found that they resort to these practices their license would be cancelled. This holds good for individuals like doctors, nurses and paramedics as well.

Having all said if you doubt such unsterile practice you should notify to the local health authority instead of being silent.

Let me know when you get better.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Root canal, fatigue, burning sore throat, lymph node swollen. Is this infection? 8 hours later
So do you really think this does NOT sound like hiv? I am still beside myself with worry. I almost feel like I have a fever every day but really dont, throat is getting sorer (mainly on the right side) and the fatigue is ridiculous. Like I said, I got the fatigue 5 days after the visit, then the sore throat later, as well as the ulcer. No matter hw much sleep I get I feel like I cant catch up. What else would present itself in this way in the summer for gods sake? 17 days now of feeling really horrible. Could acid reflux give these symptoms? a stomach ulcer? cancer? what? As far as the nurse goes she isnt even a nurse she is a poorly trained dental assistant. I did report her office also. Sounds like someone couldnt be capable of such a thing but she has really done evil things to me and others in the past. Crazy! How long could hiv live in a dental handpiece if they arent sterilized? What is the % of risk from a subcutaneous injection of anesthesia if the needle were infected? Thank you doctor for your help. I know I sound crazy, Im not. I just have so much life to live and dont want it monkeyed with by some evil nurse ratchet.
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 9 hours later
It is not too hard to convince you. If I have an evidence like P24 antigen test for HIV. It detects the HIV virus particles. HIV cannot live outside human body its genetic material should be mixed with human DNA. So no evidence that it can live on a non living dental handpiece.

First you can go back to the centre and ask if they had an HIV positive visits in the past. That suppress a lot of confusion and apprehension. Second let us suppose the hand piece is not sterilized and it has blood stuck to it. The HIV would not survive if the blood dries. Next the chances are very less that this HIV particles proliferates in your body fighting your defences. Next way to prove that you do not have HIV transmission is with the above test. Third a span of 5 days is too early to have extreme fatigue after HIV transmission.

You should just have the courage to accept that you are healthy and that you can defeat unknown and unseen particles (germs and virus) which are less powerful. That courage, diet and willfulness can itself build the required immunity to fight against disease and fatigue.

I also suppose that you can XXXXXXX a local GP / HIV specialist who can explain in person. He will also understand the scenario and would be able to explain the reasons for the fatigue, low grade fever with some other tests.
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