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recurrences locations
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recurrences locations

i have a question about where genital herpes usually appears. do recurrences usually happen inside the vagina? or outside ? I know both are possible but what is most common (typical)
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101028_tn?1348750963
you really should pursue a work up for this. get tested for latex allergies too while you are there. did you use any additional lube too or any special sorts of condoms with additional additives like the numbing agents or anything like that?

could these be herpes? they could be. they also could be other things going on like irritation from the reaction you had. go and be seen and get properly evaluated and go from there.

grace
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101028_tn?1348750963
outside the vagina
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Avatar_n_tn
does outside the vagina include the inner labia kind of inside the opening?
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The reason I ask is, 2 days ago I used a condom that I seemed to have a pretty bad reaction to. during and immediately after sex for about 45 minutes, I had really bad swelling and burning. It went away once I took a shower pretty much, but afterwards the inside of my labia has two really really sore patches on either side (kind of in symetrical places) that burn when urine goes over them. One appeared the day after and the next one appeared 2 days after. I can see the areas with a mirror if I open up... but there are no red spots or sores. But if i touch it with my fingers it feels like broken skin. But I cant see anything, does this sound like herpes???
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101028_tn?1348750963
you really should pursue a work up for this. get tested for latex allergies too while you are there. did you use any additional lube too or any special sorts of condoms with additional additives like the numbing agents or anything like that?

could these be herpes? they could be. they also could be other things going on like irritation from the reaction you had. go and be seen and get properly evaluated and go from there.

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
maybe the condom had a numbing agent but I didnt see the wrapper... that would explain the reaction I guess. I use condoms every time I have sex, varying brands and types and that has never happened before. if it were herpes wouldnt it be just on one side? this is like two symetrical painful areas on the inside of my labia... would it be that likely that herpes would also present in the non standard blister form? its been going on a couple of days now with no changes in appearance and no visible broken skin. 3 days later means too late for a culture anyway right?
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101028_tn?1348750963
you can develop a latex reaction over time too. it's certainly worth getting tested for too.  

herpes is more typical as not being blisters to be honest.  especially if you had hsv and never knew it and this just caused your first obvious recurrence.  

definitely follow up on this. while there, mention your concern about herpes so they can determine what testing is appropriate.  If you've never had a type specific herpes igg blood test before, ask for one while it's on your mind. talk to your partner about testing too if this is a regular partner.

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
the fact that its happening on both sides means nothing? I thought herpes was always one side or the other.
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Avatar_n_tn
what are some other ways besides blisters that genital herpes usually presents as?
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101028_tn?1348750963
going to be seen is the only way to get to the bottom of this. the longer you put that off, the longer you risk not getting accurate answers.

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
ok. thanks in advance for your help grace, I really appreciate it!!!!!

I went to the doctor yesterday for a walk in. I told her about the reaction to the condom and the painful areas on my inner labia. She said she most definitely did not see any herpes and if there was soreness it could be due to many things such as too much friction, soap I was using, or even stress. She didnt find yeast but prescribed me a 7 day yeast infection treatment to "be on the safe side" and said I didn't have any bacteria. I also asked her about a latex allergy and she said it was more likely to be the specific brand that irritated my skin, and not condoms in general.

I mentioned to her what you said about herpes presenting most often as non-sores and she kind of blew it off said, "I've heard stories about like kind of 'sub clinical' presentations of herpes, but in my experience, outbreaks generally follow a consistent pattern. An outbreak is an outbreak"  Then she showed me a lot of pictures of herpes which looked exactly like what I get on my lips. I asked her why so many people are confused about herpes symptoms and how was I supposed to know what was herpes and what wasnt? She said "if you got a pimple near your lip, or your lips cracked from being chapped, how would you know it wasn't a cold sore? You would know."

She did not suggest I needed a herpes blood test, or even swab the area. She also said if I couldn't stop worrying about herpes I should see a psychologist. What do you think about this advice??????

Anyway, the area is still sore but I can't tell if Im over thinking it or not. It hasnt changed at all in appearance in about 5-6 days now. Still no broken skin or blisters.  Basically I know people can have herpes outbreaks and mistake them for other things. But WHY is that???    How can I tell the difference between irritation and herpes?

I didnt see her until 5 days after symptoms appeared so a swab would have been too late anyway, right?
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101028_tn?1348750963
Love that because you are concerned about your own sexual/reproductive health  it must mean that you need counseling...lol.  first time you show up for this issue I assume, ask appropriate questions and that must mean you are nuts.  huh huh.


My recommendation is, follow up on this in a few months with a type specific herpes igg blood test to see what your own status is. since you've never been tested before, no way to know if any + results are from this encounter or not but then you'll know your status and will be acting responsible about your own sexual health :)

Up to you if you want to treat for yeast since no yeast was found.  

A newly acquired infection has a better chance of showing up at 5 days post encounter than a recurrence does but at this point, just following up with blood tests at some point is probably better.

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
well actually its not the first time, I had some issues a while back with asking about whether or not itching was due to herpes... and at that point I don't think she really understood that herpes was my main concern. At no point did she suggest that I get a blood test however.... and actually Im really afraid to do it.
I dont want to get a blood test until I have really obvious symptoms, and at this point all I have are these strange sensations from time to time that doctors look at and dismiss as nothing :(

what did you mean herpes is more common as not being blisters? did you just mean that its more common for people to have herpes without getting outbreaks, or its more common for herpes to present as OTHER things than blisters, blisters being less common?

thanks for your help grace, I just get the feeling sometimes doctors are too casual about herpes issues. Very few people understand the anxiety it can cause...
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Avatar_n_tn
sorry,
to clarify, in my case I really think a blood test is a bad idea. Becuase Ive never had an overt outbreak, if it should come back positive I would spend every day for the rest of my  life freaking out about every genital symptom ever, with still no way to really know what was herpes and what wasnt.
I think I am the perfect example of why there is disagreement among doctors as to whether or not herpes testing should be offered routinely ...
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Avatar_n_tn
ok, not sure if its related, but Im ovulating right now and my usual clear stringy discharge is a little bloody.... is that normal?
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101028_tn?1348750963
well not getting a blood test and knowing your status is causing you worry and trips to your provider anyways. why not know what you have and be done with it?  You can't protect partners unless you know your status.  

changing discharge with ovulation is normal most of the time.  The whole "natural family planning" method of birth control is based on it :)

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
ok I wont worry about the discharge too much. thanks, grace.

I have no particular reason to suspect having herpes other than I've never had a blood test. I have never had any sores or been with anyone that's tested positive for herpes. No one has ever complained of getting anything from me, and I've never tested positive for any STD.  I use condoms 100 percent of the time.

That being said, I have had sex with a LOT of people, sometimes people who's names I don't know let alone their HSV status. Thats why Im afraid to get tested. I feel like statistically, I'm more likely to have herpes than not considering how many people I've been with. What do you think about that reasoning?

I just keep hearing how common it is for people to have herpes and never know it. WHY is that??? Is completely asymptomatic herpes really that common? I don't know about other people but I NEVER mistake a cold sore when I get one. Like my doctor said, an outbreak is an outbreak. Its only after reading on the internet how genital herpes can present like "mild skin irritation" or "razor burn" that I started freaking out and going to the gyno every few months. I dont shave my face but Im pretty sure I wouldnt confuse razor burn with a cold sore.

I feel like after reading the posts on this board, that a LOT of people are in the same boat as me. Do you have any comments about the non blister type outbreaks?

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by the way, this website is amazing. All the moderators and experts are providing an amazing service to people seeking a second opinion. Grace you have so much good karma coming your way for all the help you've given people :)
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101028_tn?1348750963
condoms only reduce the risk of transmission of herpes by about 30% on average. You still should be tested periodically to know your status. Also you can transmit hsv1 from the oral area to the genital area so knowing if you have hsv1 is also a good idea for partners.

One well done study took a bunch of folks who tested hsv2+ but said that they had never had symptoms of it. they properly educated them on what to look for and 80% of them were then able to start recognizing the signs of their hsv2 reoccurring. Only 20% were actually asymptomatic. Most folks who have hsv2 don't realize that it's not typically going to reoccur as a very obvious and painful blister.  

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
yes. but what does it typically reoccur as? That is what I am on a mission to figure out. I just dont understand the disconnect between 80 percent of herpes recurrences being so mild that they arent recognized, and a doctor looking at something and being able to dismiss it as  nothing.
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101028_tn?1348750963
ulcerations, rashes etc.   that's what it reoccurs as.  

not all providers understand that herpes can present rather mildly.  A sexually active women walks into the clinic complaining of symptoms that sound like an uti for the 4th time in a year, most providers won't think hmmmm, let's rule out herpes. same with not all providers do exams for vaginitis on women and will assume discharge and itching is yeast and not get a good look at everything to see herpes lesions.  A male who complains of anal itching and his provider knows he's heterosexual, they typically think hemorrhoids and not ruling out herpes. Same as anytime any of us has had a really "good" weekend with a partner, who ever thinks that being sore and red genitally is anything more than just too much sex? Even in my own experience, my first 2 ob's presented as what I thought was just a regular ole pimple. I never thought twice about it being anything else until in hindsight over a year later when I had a rip roaring "classic" herpes ob.  

grace
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Avatar_n_tn
what color is discharge usually when its due to internal herpes lesions. Would it be safe to say that confusing herpes with yeast is pretty much limited to the initial outbreak? also herpes presenting on both sides is ONLY the first time, right?
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101028_tn?1348750963
in most cases yes, bilateral lesions are only with the initial ob but not always.

herpes discharges are clear.

If you know you can't stop thinking herpes, be tested.

grace
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