Genital herpes & Shingles outbreaks @ the same time?
Hello, first, prior to now, I have not had the genital or skin symtoms I about to discuss. I am wondering about having what could be both genital herpes & Shingles symptoms at the same time?! This has been going on for about a month now. I first thought I was just sick, like a cold - sinus infection. Soon after I developed a spotty rash on my left arm & a band of the same type rash on my lower left side abdomen.
So to comlicate matters more, just prior to the time I started antibiotics for the sinus infection, I experienced intense itching in the vaginal area after which I noticed an initial lesion in the vaginal area. Until the vaginal itch-lesion, I thought I had poison ivy because it's prevelant here and I have a dog that can get it on her fur. The vaginal itch went away after like day 2 of the antibiotics and my sinuses got better.
However, the abdomen rash isn't going away very promptly, itches like crazy at times, and it reaccured over the same initial site within like 7-10 days. I also then developed 3 new vulva spots - 2 looked like the typical herpes pictures & healed in like 5 days, one was a slit that refuses to heal due to location at top region - always getting broken open, it is painful but none of the genital leasions were itchy.
I have been sexually active with a person, about 6 times over the past 4 months who wasn't showing symptoms to my knowlege. I have since learned he was sexually active with myself & another person about the same time I came down with my syptoms.
I finally got in to see my gyno 2 days ago. She took one look at the remaining genital lesion and my syptoms and says I have herpes. She took a culture from the genital lesion but it had been there some time now, and I also went to have blood drawn for further testing. Results will be in sometime late next week.
As for the rash she says very possible shingles. I am at the end of my mental tolerance, I have no idea if I have 1 or 4 different things that were going on inside my body at the same time. To make matters worse, I may now have herpes.
I have been researching but can't find info on if there are cases where people have both shingles and herpes at the same time. I'm so confused. Or could this be something totally different?
Any information on possible diagnosis would be appreciated.
it would be very unusual to have shingles on the abdomen and also the arm. it usually doesn't reoccur in 2 different dermatones like that. did they do a lesion culture on the non-genital rashes too?
many things can cause all over body symptoms like this. I'd follow up with a dermatologist monday if you can.
anything that stresses out the body like shingles could cause a recurrence of genital herpes but at this point certainly a more thorough work up is in order. this being a friday though makes it hard to get fast answers.
Good advice but I was not able to see a dermatologist prior to the abdominal lesions-rash becoming dry and disappearing (it's never easy to see a specialist in my area). I am disappointed my gyno & myself never thought to culture the skin lesions (other than genital). I would have like to see the results. Unless the skin lesions return, I guess I will never know if they were herpes or something else. I never see information-pics about herpes being on the abdominal area, always on the back, buttocks, etc. If you know of any sites with this info, much appreciated.
The results came back. The swab culture stated 'Herpes Simplex Type II DNA detected'. The blood results said HSV Type 2 IgG - Equivocal, Varicella Ab, IgG positive. Not sure if that last means Shingles was active or just that I had chicken pox sometime in life.
I have been reading the forums here, I can't locate any information on genital herpes shedding in reagrds to: does the virus ONLY shed in our vaginal and/or oral secretions? Do you know where I could find reliable information on this? I am curious about things such as, will my skin shed the virus during asymptomatic shedding- such as virus shedding off my arm or abdomen where the rash once was? If someone is touching my genital area and say their hand has small cut or similar, can the virus enter their system that way? I need to learn all areas that I can shed the virus so I know how to protect a future partner if I am not on suprresive therapy at the time.
This is all very new to me, thank you for any information you may provide.
no it doesn't mean shingles was active - it means you had it previously which you already knew.
it's doubtful that everything you had going on was due to herpes. if you get another rash on non-genital body parts, see your regular doctor promptly for an exam. if they feel it looks like herpes or shingles, insist on a lesion culture to confirm. A visual diagnosis doesn't cut it in this day and age.
herpes on non-mucous membrane type body parts ( ie abdomen, arms etc ) is only active when there are actual lesions present. The skin on those types of body parts is too thick for the virus to shed from without lesions like it does from our more tender parts like the genitals and mouth area.
if someone has a cut on their hand, they shouldn't be manually stimulating you at all. The bacteria in the cut aren't normal in the genital area and the bacteria in the genital area isn't normal in a cut on the hand. they should wait until it heals. yes you can transmit your hsv2 to their hands but without open cuts, cracks in the skin or bitten cuticles, it's not likely to happen since the skin on the hands is so thick.
No, I do not have a current partner. I had the one who it seems I may have gotten this from, but after finding out about him & another person, well I no longer see him.
I'm not exactly eager to go out into the dating scene or trying to find a realationship, given the social stigma of this infection (just or un-just, it is our society). This is all very hard to accept, that my sexual life will forever be different and there is nothing I can do to change it. It may be some time before I find the courage to try to be intimate with someone as I will have to tell them beforehand and I'm not prepared for the rejection at this point. Plus, I live in a somewhat 'small' area, where many people know each other etc. and well.. let's just say all the factors that go along with that situation.
So for now, I am intent on learning everything I can about the subject. I have that kind of brain (science background), always wanting to know "what if", "how about", etc.
So if anyone has some great web sites, or some useful literature, would like to know about it. From what I can tell at this point, there is a variety of information out there, some which is conflicting and some which may not have much research behind it.
if your sex life is different from this point forward, it's because you've chosen to make it different. Taking a pill once or twice a day and/or using condoms and avoiding sex anytime anything is going on genitally isn't really going to change your sex life all that much. there is absolutely nothing you can't do now sexually because of herpes! There is only a stigma behind herpes if you believe there is one. when 1 out of every 2 people have oral herpes and 1 out of every 5 have genital herpes, pretty dang hard to believe there's a stigma around something!!
terri warren's book, the good news about the bad news, is a terrific book to buy. It's under $15 on amazon and I recommend it highly. otherwise the herpes handbook is free to read.
Hi Grace, I would have to disagree that my life can remain the same for the following reasons: prior to this I never had to worry about this infection, now I will have to forever watch for symptoms (even if on medication) if I am with an uninfected person, I may be taking medication daily that I never had to put in my body before, my interactions with a future mate (hopefully) will be altered by having at first to consider all the if & when's of this infection where I have not had those constraints in the past, spontaneity will be decreased, a posibble mate may not be a mate do to his thoughts on the subject, and I will have this phobia of transmitting something to someone which would make me feel terrible if I did even if they decide to take the risk. The area I live & work is small and while not correct to do so, people judge and talk about other people, and yes that will hurt me emotionally if that happens; knowing what I know, chances are pretty darn good it will happen. So yes, coming from someone who sees things very clearly, can empathize, can understand why people would not want this infection themselves, my life has indeed changed in a negative way. And I also have myself to blame for this, not just the man I was with. Whenever change comes to us that is undesirable, we have to adjust. I will have to do that, but it does't mean I won't wish for what I had a few months ago.
I downloaded the herpes handbook from the web and I have just ordered Terri Warren's book. Thanks!!!
Hi again. Well, read the handbook & Terri's book, cover to cover and have done some more searching on things. Now I have some specific questions that I would like to ask. In the info on posting, you advise that we should not post to both here & the expert forum. But being I now have some specifics I would like to ask, what is the best way for me to ask an expert on here without it being considered duplication etc.
Also, can you advise on how many questions one can ask for the payment - I have a few.
I realize this posting is rather old. I have been recovering from a severe case of shingles, started in March 2012. This week I found a small rash that looked and acted like shingles, on my butt, fleshy part. Went to the Dr. she suspected herpes, all the tests returned herpes. I have not been sexually active for YEARS, literally. I was married and remained faithful the entire marriage of 10 years and still to this day 3 years after divorce no sexual activity. I am not saying he was not faithful but it is very unlikely he was. So my question: Is the fact my immune system is so low, the shingles is a clear indication and blood tests show major vitamin D deficiency, is this the reason this herpes in surfacing in my body now? I have never had herpes prior, no STD's in my history at all. I am really very puzzled by this...it has stayed dormant until now? I am older and raising a grand child so dating is really not in the picture but someday it would be nice - maybe. With this I am so not into sex or thinking of it. The nerve damage from the Shingles has me in so much pain I do not know if I will ever feel up to again anyway. Just wonder if this is a rare occurrence: shingles then herpes surfacing from a low immune system and if the herpes virus stays dormant without indications...feeling picked on at this point. Any advice is welcome.
You're not alone in your frustration. I contracted herpes in 1980. It was always a 'normal' case (vaginal) until a few years ago it appeared in a bad patchon my arm and then a few days later vaginally, like normal. Since then, it has migrated to my rectal area, but a month agao it appeared in a bad patch on the inside of my leg (panty line) and all over my left buttock. To make matters worse, little bumps started appearing here and there on my face, arms, chest, back, even the inside of my nose and my scalp. Only 3 actually blistered. the thing is, I now itch all over and nothing is there. The worst is healing and yet I feel like bugs are crawling all over me. I am here trying to find out why. I hope you find answers and if you know anything, please tell me. I don't understand how herpes can travel all over the place. I thought it was only supposed to travel the nerve from the area it lives in the lower spine (for genital herpes).
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