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Positive HSV-2 without having sex?
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Positive HSV-2 without having sex?

I was treated with a cortisteroid Injection and about 5 days later I broke out with bumps & blisters on my buttocks.  My medical Dr. told me it looked like herpes and I had blood drawn and the results were positive for HSV-1 & 2.  I brought my husband in to be tested and he came up positive for HSV-1, but not HSV-2.  I was retested about a week later for HSV-1 & 2 igg type specific; and HSV, igm I/II combination.  I came up positive for all 3 of them.  The Dr said that I had to get the HSV-2 from sex.  The problem I am having with this is that I have not had sex (vaginal, anal or oral) for several years due to a back injury.  Is it possible that I got infected from the injection or that the Dr. who gave me the injection did not sterilize his hands, etc,?   PLEASE HELP ME UNDERSTAND!!!
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19 Comments Post a Comment
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1705114_tn?1314222104
You did not contract herpes from the injection or from the doctor. It is possible that you contracted herpes from a sexual encounter before your back injury and did not recognize symptoms or are completely asympomatic. 90% of people do not know they have herpes until testing. BUT before we assume you have herpes could you find out your numerical values for your tests to see if you need confirmatory testing. There are false positive issues with these tests
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101028_tn?1348750963
steroids actually trigger herpes to be more active. In laboratory experiments on mice for herpes, they give them injections of steroids to activate their herpes so that they can study the effects of medications on herpes.

odds are that neither you nor your husband have ever been tested for herpes before this.  As franklinandbash already pointed out - most folks who have hsv2, have no idea that they are infected until they are tested or have very obvious symptoms.

did you have partners prior to your spouse?

grace
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks for responding.

I've heard that the Herpes Zoster can be activated as a result of steroid injections, but not HSV-2.  I had 2 steroid injections prior to my back surgery in 2001 and nothing like this happened.

I am 53 years old. I got married in 2000.  Prior to my marriage, I was not sexually active for nearly 10 years.  

Thanks for your responding....Blessings!
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101028_tn?1348750963
you testing + and hubby not means that you've had hsv2 since before you met him and just never knew it.  I will gladly take a look at your test results if you want to post them here to make sure you don't need additional testing since you didn't have a lesion culture done to confirm that these are hsv2.

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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks again for responding.

My first blood test ordered by my Primary MD about 10 days after the injection indicated by Quest Diagnostics:
HSV-1 IGG > 5.00;
HSV-2 IGG > 5.00;
HSV IGM = Detected, but no range specified
My husband results showed HSV-1 IGG > 5.00 only

My second blood test ordered by an Infectious Disease Dr taken a week after the first test indicated by LabCorp :
HSV-1 IgG=2.77;
HSV-2 IgG=5.40;
HSV I/II Combination IgM=4.19;
Varicella-Zoster IGG=1.60;
Varicella-Zoster Ab igM=<0.91;
Human Herpes Virus 6 Igm=<1:10
HHV 6 IgG=16.89
My husband had additional test ordered last week, but results are not in yet.

I appreciate you taking the time to review the results...look forward to hearing back from you....Blessings!
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101028_tn?1348750963
your hsv2 igg's are over 5 both times so it's not likely that they are a false positive especially since it was 2 completely different tests done ( quest is herpeselect and labcorp is captia ). No need for further testing unless you just really need the peace of mind. If so, it would be a herpes WB test you would need.  really not worth the money to do so though to be honest.  thank you for getting those results though, it really is best to post them so make sure that your provider didn't order the wrong testing or interpret results wrong :)

since you've had it since before you met him and never knew it, you know how low the risk of transmitting it to your partner can be. Have the two of you discussed if you want to start taking any precautions to help reduce his odds of contracting it from you when you resume your sex life?

No way to know if this was zoster since only blood testing was done and not a lesion culture.  could just be coincidence that you found out that you have hsv2 from all of this but odds are it was hsv2 and not shingles. Have you discussed with your provider how to treat your herpes while you are under treatment with steroids?
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks again for responding....I truly appreciate it!

I have 3 questions please :)

OK, so you are telling me that I have had hsv2 for over 20 years ago and never knew it?    So, why didn't it show up when I had two (2) steroid injections 10 years ago?

Another question please:  Can you please explain what does the HSV IgM test and the results mean?  The first test HSV IgM showed DETECTED with no specified range (taken about 10 days after the injection), BUT the second test HSV IgM I/II Comb showed 4.19 (taken about 5 days after the first test).

I've taken the valtrex and the pain/lesions are pretty much cleared up....can I still take the WB test?

Thank you for your time...look forward to hearing back from you.!!
You are a blessings to this forum :)
DAWCor
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1174003_tn?1308164419
Good questions.  Let's see what we can knock out here.

Steriods help activate it.  The symptoms you may have had may have been mild enough you didn't notice them or they were written off as something else.  When HSV-1 and HSV-2 are present the symptoms of both can be more mild.  So to answer the question is you could have been lucky.  There is a study where a majority of people didn't know they had HSV-2 until they were tested using blood test and then told the symptoms of HSV-2 to which many of them recalled having symptoms of that.  Food for the thought.

HSV IgM testing is flawed and really it shouldn't be used. CDC guiielines of 2010 even state against their use in the adult population because they are worthless.  The numbers are really not important and the IgG testing trumps the IgM test as the IgM is known to cross react and lead to false positives.  

The western blot in all honesty is not worth the money.  The test alone is over 200.00.  In reality its meant to confirm a diagnoisis and in your case we would only advise someone in the even of a low positive range where we see high false positives.  Your testing with 2 different testing companys (two different tests completely including their chemical make up) proves your HSV status as HSV-1 and HSV-2.  However, if you feel the need to use the western blot we can't tell you no.  That is between you and your provider.  In all honesty for your status is pointless because if you have another outbreak you can just have a lesion culture done to prove your blood testing right (if you go down that route be seen within 48hrs at the latest to have a swab culture taken or a PCR testing done).  

You are welcome to take the test though and your Valtrex won't impact the results as you have had HSV-2 for awhile I am sure.  
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101028_tn?1348750963
it is hard to believe that you had hsv2 for over 20 years and never knew it but it's actually more common than you would ever guess. Over 90% of folks who have hsv2, have no idea they are infected until they get tested, pass it on to a partner or have an obvious lesion that makes them go to be seen. So why such a humdinger of a recurrence now and not previously when you had steroid shots?  Bad luck more than anything as well as the older we get, the less our bodies are able to keep us free from infections in general.

best of luck getting your back pain under control!  At least the herpes is almost healed so that you don't have that annoying herpes rash going on at the same time.
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Avatar_f_tn
I got tested for herpes one and two. It was about a year ago. I know I have herpes one but two came out negitive. I reasently got tested again and came up positive for one and two
I have been with the same man for five years and never cheeted on him.Is it possible if he gets tested and be negiteve for herpes two?
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Avatar_f_tn
I just asked a question about herpes. Is there any way to contract herpes simplex two with out having sex? Dirty needle? Tolet? If I have herpes one on my face and a person kisses me and it gets my vigina (vagina) infected? I'm confused and don't know where I got this from. I just had spinal fusion and contracted impatigo while at the hospital three weeks ago. Please help me.
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8196055_tn?1396969484
I got herpes, when i was 14 y/o, no sex no anything.. but then it all started after an excessive diet, it turns out that i have a low immune system, i got really scared if i can consider myself as an STD patient.. i don't know what am i going to do.. but now i'm turning 18 and thank god there's no outbreak all over the years.. though it making me scared always.
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Avatar_m_tn
No outbreak is a good sign.  

You probably have HSV1 which doesn't even transfer genital to genital so you really don't have to worry much about it at all.  SHouldn't change your sex-life whatsoever.  HSV2 is a VASTLY different story....  You need to know which type you have.

Get a type-specific blood test for confirmation, but HSV1 is actually a pretty easy virus to live with.  Very easy actually.
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8196055_tn?1396969484
1? i just don't really know , when i was confined..my doctor said, I have a genital herpes, ulcer and UTI.. been sick for 2 mos.  really? it doesn't transmit from genitals to genitals?
and  there's a particular study stating that.. it may occur again like sometimes 2 years after like that.. some people suffered from it 4 or 5 times. and transmit it when there's a sexual intercourse. my blood type is O >_< our family's blood is O.
idk if blood test can confirm it , cause that particular event happened 3 years ago.
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Avatar_m_tn
If it was herpes the blood would confirm it. I promise you that
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8196055_tn?1396969484
i think i'm already scared to know ;((
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Avatar_m_tn
Scared why?  You haven't had an outbreak in years yet you have herpes. Best to know which kind you have in order to plan accordingly.  You don't have to tell if you have HSV1.  It's no harm to anyone.  

If its type 2 you have to tell all partners, but I don't think you need to worry about that
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8196055_tn?1396969484
cause what if it's still active ;( it can affect my studies, even my family again.  my family got a problem towards money a years ago, just to cure this..
i have an exam this month and it's kind of a expensive, tuition fees.. a lot more >_< i don't know what am i going to do. Actually, i also have a carpal tunnel syndrome and sometimes it's getting worst..what do you think am i going to choose first? ;(
and also, what if everyone knew and misinterpret that i have a herpes ;(
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Avatar_m_tn
I'll just say this: If you're not prepared to know what's going on with your body, then you aren't prepared to have sex.  

It's all fine and good for you to not take the time to figure out what's really going on. But as long as you aren't having sex - and potentially giving someone else an incurable condition - I don't see any issue.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am 58 years old, been a widow for 14 months and didn't have sex of any kind for at least 5 years but 4 days ago developed some sores in my genitalia, very painful, went to doctor today and he told me it was herpes, gave me acyclovire never swab or blood tested. After checking what herpes is can't understand how I could have it unless I have had it for years and never knew/
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