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Herpes Symptoms, Negative Test
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Herpes Symptoms, Negative Test

I went back to the doctor's at close to the 6 month mark (Exposure 7/4, Retested 12/22). Took the Herpeselect test again and both results are negative. I am not sure of the exact readings, but my doctor just left me a message saying both were negative and I should stop worrying. He believe no further testing is required and I have neither HSV1 or HSV2. I had previous tests at the 2 month and 3.5 month marks, and both were negative for HSV1 and HSV2.

This all started after 4th of July where I had an encounter with a female who is positive for HSV1/HSV2. The problem is that there was a lot of alcohol involved and I cannot be certain that we ever even had sexual intercourse. I did wake up in her bed though, and 3 days afterward I woke up to a stinging sensation on the corona of my penis. This stinging was then a red mark and a developed other small areas of redness on my penis head as well. However, none of the areas produced classic blisters, they just looked like red irritation.

My worries stem from the fact that I have been getting sharp pains in my legs, buttocks, and sometimes in my groin area. This accompanied by the rash and the timeframe for the onset of the symptoms all lead me to believe it is herpes related.

The other concerning part about the test results were that I thought I had experienced two cold sores on my lip since my exposure to this female. My upper right lip was swollen with a red blister on the border which lasted for about a week.  This happened twice and I was evaluated at a walk in clinic and diagnosed visually with HSV1 (given weeks worth of Valtrex).

Any thoughts or suggestions about how to make sure I am truly negative? Could I still have HSV-1 and GHSV-1? What are the probabilities I might have HSV-2 and still testing negative? What should be my next steps from here? At this point I don't care what I have, I just want to know so I can move forward with my life.
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55646_tn?1263664409
I think you should rely on the HSV 2 test at this point and somehow come to the belief that you are NOT Infected with HSV 2.  The HSV 1 situation is a bit complicated since you believe that you actually had two outbreaks of HSV 1 on your lip. Did anyone swab these lesions?  If not, I don't think a diagnosis of HSV 1 can be reliably made.  And antibody test for HSV 1 would be more reliable if it was a herpes western blot, done through the University of Washington.  We believe it is more sensitive for HSV 1 than the routine ELISA test.  Since it has been six months since the contact, a negative western blot for HSV 1 and 2 would be a great reassurance for you.  And if that is the case, then the next time you get a bump on your lip, you should immediately go in for a swab test of the bump.  

Does that all sound like a reasonable plan?

Terri
9 Comments
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Avatar_m_tn
Terri,

I will consult my doctor and ask for the Western Blot test.  The one variable in this whole situation is the fact that I was on a 5 month course of accutane that ended the weekend of this encounter.  I wonder if that could play a role in the pain and red marks I have been experiencing on my penis.

It just seems odd that I would have these pains in my buttocks, groin, and legs that accompany the rash.  All the signs point to herpes but the test says negative.  My other guess is that I might have contracted HSV-1 orally and genitally, though I have read a post from Dr. Handsfield where he states he has never seen such a case.

To answer your question, no the outbreak on my lip was not swabbed.  It was glanced at on both occasions and immediately deemed to be HSV-1.  That is why the negative tests are so confusing.  Is the ELISA test more reliable for HSV-2 and less reliable for HSV-1?
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55646_tn?1263664409
Yes, it is more reliable for HSV 2 than HSV 1.  

I, in fact, have seen several cases of oral and genital acquisition at the same time - people give oral sex to and have intercourse with the same person at the same time.  It would be best if you had the oral outbreak swab tested.  It may well be HSV 1, but that has yet to be proven.  Pleas pursue the western blot and confirm that the western blot is or is not positive, and let me know the results, OK?
Terri
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Avatar_m_tn
Terri,

I just got off the phone with my doctor and he thinks I am crazy.  He does not see the point in taking a western blot test.  I explained my concerns about being visually diagnosed for HSV-1 and the tests still showing negative.  At this point, I am pretty sure he is almost annoyed that I cannot accept the results.  He thinks the two recurrences on my lip were aphthous ulcers, not cold sores even though he never saw them.  I can assure you, they were not ulcers.

Anyway, would you recommend ordering the test myself?  It does not look like he wants to proceed with any more tests.
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1086168_tn?1285357044
Over to Terri on if you should take more tests, but my story may put you a bit at ease.

I had pain in the tip of my penis around 3 weeks following a regretted encounter.  My doc looked at it visually and saw some red areas inside my urethra and said "might be urethral herpes."  Those 4 words scared the hell out of me, and the pain got worse as I stressed.  I ended up with pain in my genitals, tingling in my pernium, and problems with urination.

I tested negative for HSV-1 and HSV-2 via Herpeselect at 4-7-12 and 16 weeks.  

I found treatment for CPPS (Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome), look it up in wiki or go here http://www.chronicprostatitis.com/ .  Anxiety can cause all kinds of symptoms down there...  except for full on blisters.  I never had these, but could of sworn what I felt was herpes.

To make matters worse, I had a test done at 1 year.  I felt confident in my previous results so I didn't ask for a herpeselect test specifically.  They used an unkown immunoassay test that didn't have a titer number....  just came back positive.

I went through all the sensations again, yet....  no blisters.

I had the Western Blot test done.  Negative for HSV-1 and HSV-2.

What you are feeling, believe it or not, can very well be anxiety related.  Try to relax and take your mind off of HSV, and see if the symptoms go away.  

If you think you need the Western Blot to convince yourself that you are herpes free, do it, but I wouldn't recommend any of the other tests.  As you take more and more tests, you open yourself up to getting a false positive like I did.  Trust me, that's not fun.

From what I've read on here, I doubt you have HSV-2.

Hope this helps.
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55646_tn?1263664409
thanks for you input, that was very useful.

Terri
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Avatar_m_tn
I was reading thru this and I have question. Were you on any kind of anti-viral therapy when you re-tested? If you are on, does it make any difference?
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Avatar_m_tn
Hello Terri,

My doctor is unfamiliar with the Western Blot and told me it would be a step backwards to use that test.  He is convinced I do not have herpes but cannot provide any other explanations for the pain and recurring rash.  I had read on a forum that you do offer over the phone consultative services.  I was wondering if I could set up a consultative session and you could order the western blot test for me?  What would be the process for this?
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55646_tn?1263664409
Yes, of course.  You can call my office, 503-226-6678 and set up an appointment for a phone consult.  No problem, I'm sure we can do this in the coming week.

Terri
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