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Curious about positive ELISA test being asymptomatic
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Curious about positive ELISA test being asymptomatic

Hello,

I sincerely appreciate any advice given - and I realize many of these questions have been asked before but there's so much information floating around I can't seem to find the answers I am looking for.

I recently had a full 8-panel STD test done through LabCorp. I had switched to a HDHP so did it this way instead of going through my doctor. It came back negative for all except igG HSV 2 = 3.21.

I had been STD tested before semi-regularly at Kaiser (before HDHP), but I'm not sure they ever tested for herpes (I don't think they ever considered me at risk). A little about my history: My last partner was 13 weeks ago - we only had sex a couple times over a 2 week period. Before that a year long monogamous relationship. Before that two partners over probably a six month period and before that a 3+ year monogamous relationship. Similar story before. No one has ever had HSV 2 when we were together or has informed me since that they have HSV 2.

I have never had one iota of symptoms let alone an outbreak. I'm perfectly healthy and rarely even get a cold. I know many people who test positive are asymptomatic. Based on my history it just seems rare that I would have it, but hey I will deal with it if I do. These are my questions:

- Does the 3.21 result warrant retesting? I have ordered the WB kit from UW. Should I also retest igG?
- What exactly does a 3.21 result mean? If this is correct does that mean I have recently contracted it (it will go higher), or could I have had it from my first sexual encounter 15 years ago and never known (it will always be in the 3.2 range)? Is there any meaning to the positive value if you are asymptomatic?
- If I do have HSV 2, and since I have never had a symptom or outbreak what is the likelihood I will never have an outbreak. Is there some sort of outbreak probability research available?

Thank you.
8 Comments Post a Comment
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101028_tn?1348750963
confirming with the WB is the best thing to do at this point. You need to wait until 16 weeks after you last had sex to have it drawn.  that will tell you if this is atrue positive or a false positive.

odds are you weren't tested at kaiser. They don't offer it routinely and even getting type specific testing done when you beg for it is hard  thru them :(

grace
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you Grace. If the test result is correct, would the low positive value indicate that I have contracted HSV-2 recently? Or is there no way to tell? I'm trying to figure out how far back this could have happened and who I need to inform. Thanks.
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101028_tn?1348750963
the low positive result would only show that you have hsv2, it won't tell you how long you've had it.  for instance I've had hsv2 for over 25 years now, last time I had igg testing done, I only tested around the 3 mark.

do you have to inform past partners? Well totally up to you but really all you have to do is just talk about it with any future potential partners.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Grace - thank you so much for your responses. The positive HSV-2 test came as a tremendous shock and I'm doing everything I can to make sense of it. Your help is tremendously appreciated.
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Avatar_m_tn
One final question. My most recent partner from the date of the test was 12-14 weeks prior. I believe we had sex 2-4 times (I'm a heterosexual male). Would I be able to rule her out with a 3.21 IgG result (enough time for that amount of anitbodies to develop)? It seems long on odds I would acquire this from her, more likely from a longer term relationship where my partner did not know she had it (like I'm just finding out now). Thanks!
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101028_tn?1348750963
well it does only take one time but the risk really is higher when it's a regular partner you have sex with regularly.

at this point, confirm your infection to make sure you really do have hsv2 and go from there. why beat yourself up over who to talk to about this if you don't have to?  
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Avatar_m_tn
I am very confused. I went to my doctor today and she said I didn't have HSV-2 since I have never had an outbreak or symptom. Rather I had been exposed to the virus and had antibodies. She said the only way to truly diagnose HSV was to do a swab test on a cut, blister, or lesion. There seems to be a lot of disagreement on whether people have the virus or not with just a positive IgG test. My doctor is in San Francisco and went to UCSF, so it seems like she should know a thing or two about STIs. Do I believe the internet or my doctor?

Is this why CDC does not recommend HSV testing for the general population - because it causes a severe psychological toll on people with no history of HSV who do test positive with a blood test?

Thanks!
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101028_tn?1348750963
your provider is mistaken about what testing positive for herpes means. loads of studies published on shedding rates for the virus on people who tested + and never had obvious symptoms as far as they knew.

confirm your status - getting a wb is easy in CA.
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