This forum is an un-mediated, patient-to-patient forum for questions and support regarding herpes issues such as: Herpes symptoms and treatments, causes, diagnosis, and herpes in men, tests, telling your spouse or partner.
I am a female and I recently had my first genital outbreak of blisters during a time when I was sick and menstruating. They were not painful but itchy and began to scab over (4 of them bilateral). By the time I saw my gyno she said herpes culture would probably be negative because they were beginning to scab, but the culture came back positive for HSV-1. She said it was most likely due to oral sex. I had not had oral sex for at least 6 months prior to this outbreak (never with someone with an active cold sore or history of cold sores). I had bloodwork, she said they were negative for HSV-1 and HSV-2 IgM AND IGg. My primary care doctor reported a positive, but extrememly low, result for HSV-1 Igm meaning a primary infection. My confusion is I am not sure how this could have been contracted. All of my possibilities seem very unlikely. Is there one that seems more likely??
1.) 5/6 weeks prior to this outbreak, I had unprotected genital to genital contact with someone with no symptoms. I've read that the incubation period for genital herpes does not reach over 3 weeks?
2.) About 5 days before symptoms I used friend's towel after her, do not know her status. (I know this has been said to be extrememly unlikely if not impossible).
3.) About 5 days before symptoms-protected genital to genital intercourse with someone without symptoms or a history of them. Contact to genitals through saliva on his finger may have happened. (no cold sore present)
4.) Around the same time, kissing someone without symptoms--could the virus possibly be transmitted to my lips and then through saliva on my own finger genitally? Basically a simultaneous initial oral and genital infection?
So confused as all of these seem unlikely. I am considering getting another blood test in 6 weeks, but I know that cultures are basically 99% accuracte and the only chance of error would be human error. I know it is probably hopeless to figure out how I have contracted this-but it is causing me some distress. I have only had two partners and should have them both tested as a start, but also know that 60-80% of people will test for HSV-1 anyways. Thanks for your help..
less than 10% of all hsv1 genital infections do occur from genital to genital contact without oral sex.
Repeating your blood tests may or may not give you the answers you are looking for. Even the best blood tests still miss 1 out of every 10 hsv1 infections so a negative igg on your current tests or any future tests might not be accurate.
At this point, get your partner tested for herpes to see what their status is and go from there as far as deciding together what precautions, if any, to take together from this point forward.
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