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'm skeptical of my IgG results. What should I do?
I was repeatedly molested between the ages of six and eighteen. Around age twelve, when things had escalated to digital penetration, I got a few extremely painful sores in my genital area. (During the new form of abuse, I honestly can't remember if his saliva was involved. In terms of Type I, I know this would be important information to remember and it drives me nuts that I can't.)
The day before I noticed the sores, I was almost bedridden from feeling so achy, like getting over a really bad fever. Only I didn't have any fever symptoms. I just hurt. With the sores the next day, they were red and irritated and a bit crater-like. A couple of days in, they were bad enough that I could barely sit. Urinating was absolutely excruciating and is still the worst pain I can remember having. I also started to get a thin, white discharge.
I went to my doctor at the time, who declared it herpes when she looked, but took a (very painful) swab test anyway. I was never given the results of that test and that doctor moved out of the state years ago.
About 7-10 days into it, the sores finally dried up (getting pretty itchy along the way) and cleared. I tried to forget about it. Years later, I had a small recurrence when I was about eighteen and again when I was twenty. (Aside from the abuse, I was not and have not been sexually active in any way.) It was identical to when I was twelve (only not as painful as I remembered, though still painful), and what I believed was in almost the exact same area. I just dealt with the outbreak at age eighteen. For the outbreak at age twenty, I went to my (different) doctor at the time, who, like the one before him, declared it herpes once he saw it. I was a little wiser this time, so I asked him for a blood test. He said that wasn't necessary since I already knew I had it. (Obviously now I know that was dumb on his part. Actually, I don't think either doctor really knew what they were talking about.) He refused to write for a blood test, but gave me Valtrex. I believed it helped clear up the sores a few days faster.
Even though kissing was involved with the abuse, I've never had any symptoms orally.
I'm now twenty-five. Recently having found yet-another doctor, she willingly wrote me for an IgG blood test to look for both types of herpes. I got the call the other day that my results for both Type I and Type II are negative, that I don't have herpes.
I really want to believe this, but I don't seem able to. All I can think is that it's a false negative. Honestly, the reason I got the test wasn't so much to find out whether or not I had herpes, but find out which type I had. Based on my own research, I was certain I had Type I (that fateful day of possible saliva-to-genital contact via fingers when I was twelve) and just wanted to see the proof on paper. Now I have proof on paper saying I don't have anything. Having lived this long believing I have it and grappling with all that means, this news is almost unwelcome. Now I don't know what to think. I almost don't want to be tested again because if it turns out that I do have herpes and the first test was a mistake, it's going to be like getting the news the first time all over again, which was rough. It'll be harder than if they got the test right the first time.
I've left a message with my doctor, and I know eventually she'll call me back, but in the meantime I can't get my mind to settle. So I was curious for thoughts from the community:
1. How likely is it that my test is a false negative? How likely is it that it's a true negative?
2. If I want to get tested again, should I go for another IgG (at a different place?) or is there something else even more accurate?
3. If my test again comes back negative, should I simply accept the results as true?
4. If I really don't have herpes, what the heck might I have had (or still have)?
unfortunately even the best herpes tests still miss 1 out of every 10 hsv1 infections. even if you had tested + for hsv1 on your testing, still not proof that you have hsv1 genitally.
at this point, all you can do is wait for a return of symptoms , should you ever get them , and seek out a lesion culture and typing within 48 hours of the appearance of lesions. pcr swabbing would be most helpful. If you do have hsv1 genitally, recurrences are typically few and far between so unfortunately this might be awhile until you get a recurrence, if you ever do.
I know these are still very grey answers for you at a time when you are looking for black and white answers :( Sometimes it's not as easy as it should be to figure out what is going on.
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