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Soreness at tip of penis
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The STD Forum is intended only for questions and support pertaining to sexually transmitted diseases other than HIV/AIDS, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, human papillomavirus, genital warts, trichomonas, other vaginal infections, nongonoccal urethritis (NGU), cervicitis, molluscum contagiosum, chancroid, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Soreness at tip of penis

Exactly a week ago (7 days)  I had unprotected oral and vaginal sex with a new partner.  I was feeling fine until yesterday when I started to feel a soreness, almost like a mild burning at the tip of my penis.  Upon inspection, I didn't notice any blisters, sores, discharge as of yet.... but the tip near the opening is a little red.  When I squeeze the tip, I feel the soreness more.  Today the soreness is more pronounced than yesterday and it is still red at the tip (but no bumps).  I'm concerned that this might be an STD.... I have four questions for you doc: do my symptoms that I describe match any STD that you may know of?  What should I look for in the next couple days? And should I go for testing since it's only been a week?  What are the odds of catching an STD with only one episode of unprotected sex?
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Your unprotected sex has lead to soreness and redness at the tip of your penis but no discharge or sores- could this be an STD?  The redness and perhaps tenderness at the tip of the penis could be irritation due to gonorrhea, chlamydia or non-gonococcal urethritis (NGU).  The timing is not bad for this.  At this point testing is preferrable to watching an waiting to see what happens or to self-medicate yourself without knowing what it there.  To get this evaluated you could see most any health care provider who should be able to do the tests for gonorrhea, chlamydia and white blood cells (to check for NGU).  It would be best to have not voided for at least and hour and preferrably 2 before testing.  If you have any of these, treatment is easy and can be given in a single dose.

From what you describe the risk of other problems (herpes, syphilis) is low and in my opinion, unless you examination shows something else, you do not need testing for them.

Finally the odds of getting one of these infections mentioned above, IF your partner was infected, may be as high as 1 in 5.  the big question is, was she infected.

Gook luck.  EWH
16 Comments
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks for your reply... It helps a great deal, however it seems I'm going to have to wait until Monday for testing since it's the weekend already.  I guess by then I'll really know if I have something.  
There are so many antibiotics out there that I feel some doctors just prescribe what they feel MIGHT help without taking a culture or really diagnosing the problem correctly.  For example, I told my cousin who is a pediatrician about my symptoms and he told me a few doses of cypro will knock everything out if it's a bacterial STD.  However, I'm not one to just take antibiotics unless correctly diagnosed, even by a doctor.  Are there different types of antibiotics that need to be taken for each of the three diseases (gonorrhea, chlamydia, NSU) you mentioned above? Or is it true one type of antibiotic can work?
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300980_tn?1194933000
I'm pleased to hear that you will not have to take antibiotics without knowing what you have.  That is EXACTLY the right thing to do since mis-directed antibiotics can cause problems and make diagnosis more dificult.

Indeed NGU and chlamydia are treated with the same medicine but gonorrhea requires a different one.

Good luck.  EWH
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Avatar_m_tn
Dr. EWH,

I don't know where to begin... I'm so nervous.  I spoke to the person who I had the sexual encounter with and she agreed to get tested for STDs.  Her results came back today and she told me she was negative for Hep B & C, HIV, Chlamydia, NG, and Syphillis (syphilis).... however she tested positive for HSV 1 and HSV 2.  The test was IgG and her results were 1.44H for HSV 1 and 3.76H for HSV 2.  Its been 11 days since the encounter and I do not have any sores or blisters on or around my genitals, and the soreness I had at the tip of my penis has subsided since our last post.  I'm so concerned right now. What are the chances I contracted the virus? and when should I get tested? Please shed some insight!
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Avatar_m_tn
I saw my doctor today and got tested for all STDs.... the results will be ready next week.  Although he did agree that the tip of my penis was a little red, he didn't think it was resembling the beginning of a herpes outbreak (he did state that not all outbreaks are the same though).  What's weird is that ever since I found out about my sexual partner being infected with HSV1&2, the soreness that I originally felt at the tip of my penis has gotten stronger... I don't know if it's anxiety thats causing this, or the stress that I feel is causing an outbreak.  But I'm not crazy, I do feel this soreness. I would appreciate if you can answer the questions above in the previous post and add any insight to help me with the next coming weeks of uncertainty.  When should I get tested again to assure?  
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300980_tn?1194933000
Your partner got tested and the results you report suggest that her indicators of herpes were blood test results.  These results are far more likely to indicate that she has had herpes for a while and did not know it than anything else.  So, if she had longstanding herpes, how infectious is she- the answer is not very. Most exposures to herpes do NOT  lead to infection. Most infections lead to lesion appearance in less than 10 day, thus if your coulture is negative you did not get herpes.  Take a deep breath, relax and wait for your culture results.  EWH
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Avatar_m_tn
Yes Dr. Hook, her HSV results were from a blood test thru LabCorp.  I also had blood test done for HSV1&2... I didn't have a culture taken because I do not have a lesion... however for the past five days, as I've said before, I have had the soreness feeling at the tip of my penis with redness and it looks a little swollen.  It doesn't appear to have gotten any worse, but not any better either. Could this be a non typical symptom of HSV2?  And when is the best time to have blood work done in the future to get an accurate result since the encounter was only 12 days ago?  
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Avatar_n_tn
Please continue to post.  I've had very similar symptoms with the same results.  I was married to a woman who has had full blown herpes.  For the 15 years we were together I never tested positive and never had symptoms.  However, I have had symptoms like yours and urethritis several times in my life after very aggressive sex.  I'm also finding that post menopausal women and women who have had their ovaries removed are far more susceptible to  common bacterial and yeast infections.  
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300980_tn?1194933000
Could it be herpes, I suppose. The disease is highly variable so even someone with very atypical findings such as yourself could have herpes.  On the other hand, is it likely- no, not at all.  Inf act, I from your description it is far more likely that what you are experiencing is anxiety than herpes.  You will need to wait three months before believing any follow-up blood test results.  EWH
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks for your comment.... I replied in a message which I sent to you.  It's pretty amazing you had a 15 year marrage and never contracted the herpes virus... do you have unprotected sex?  
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Avatar_m_tn
Dr. Hook, thanks for all your replies.... although I am still very much scared and trying to cope with the whole situation, I have no choice but to wait and see my blood results next week, and then wait 3 months to get retested.  I just hope to God that the symptoms I feel are not atypical herpes symptoms, and more of my mind playing tricks on me.
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I am confident they do not reflect herpes.  Please let us know when you get your (negative) test results back in three months.  EWH
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Avatar_m_tn
Dr. Hook, this morning I woke up with a soreness in my left groin area.... I really didn't think much of it unitl it really felt achy.... I then went online and realized that the soreness is coming from the exact location where my lymph nodes are located in the groin area. I also read that the herpes virus can cause swollen lymph nodes in the groin area.  This really heightened my concern.  Although I still do not have any lesions or blisters (13 days since exposure) except the slight redness at the tip of my penis that I mentioned to you before, could this achy feeling be caused by the herpes virus? And should I do anything about this feeling, or should I just continue to wait out the three months unitl I can have a follow up blood test done?
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300980_tn?1194933000
Sorry, unless lesions appear, you still need to wait.  If the discomfort you note is related to HSV, lesions are likely to appear (or have alrady appeared.  Swollen lymph nodes are far beyong the scope of this site.  If you remain concerned, you sould go see a doctor, not try to sort it out ove rthe internet.  I remain skeptical that all of this is herpes.  EWH.
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Avatar_m_tn
Well Dr. Hook, lesions have not appeared, and if they are going to I would notice them because of how paranoid I am. Day 14 since exposure, and all I have is this annoying minor redness and soreness at the tip of my penis which hasn't gotten better or worse since I first told you about it.  I did have the achy feeling in my groin area yesterday, with a lower back ache as well... but I took some Advil and it has disapated greatly.  I'll let you know my test results on Wednesday, and again in three months.  Other than that I will end this thread.  Thank you for everything!
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Avatar_m_tn
     Today is Wednesday and I saw my doctor. My results for my HerpesSelect blood test for HSV1 IGG came back positive 3.38H and for HSV2 IGG it came back negative 0.11H.  My doctor told me the same thing you guys told me, that most people are positive for HSV1 and not to worry (I don't ever recall having a oral sore in my life).  Although my HSV2 result was negative, the doctor explained I need to be retested in 8 weeks to be sure I wasn't infected during this exposure.  
     Now what worries me most is this weird achy/sore/sharp pain I feel in my groin area since last Thursday (as previously explained).  The pain has not gotten any better, and I've now begun to feel it in the right groin area as well, and more pronounced.  My doctor examined me today, and said he did not feel lymph nodes that were swollen.  He said that it may be anxiety driven, however I KNOW THAT THIS PAIN REALLY EXISTS, IT'S NOT IN MY HEAD.  This is day 18 since exposure to HSV2, and I still have not had any visible lesions or sores on my genitals.  In your opinion, what is the likelyhood that this pain I feel is related to a possible HSV2 infection?  Dr. HHH has stated that mostly all first HSV2 infections cause some sort of outbreak, however they go unnoticed because they can be mild... can HSV2 infection occur with ABSOULTELY NO outbreak? And what would you do if you were in my shoes at this point in time?
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300980_tn?1194933000
You keep asking the same question and, as the evidence accumulates the you did not acquire herpes, I keep giving you the same answwer.  I will do so one last time. Then the thread must end.  There is no evidence that you have herpes or that the symptoms you are experiencing are herpes.  As to what it could be, that is beyond the scope of this forum and is far better resolved with a visit to your own health care provider who can examine you and, if needed, order whatever tests might help to clarify things.  It is (past) time for you to stop worrying about herpes.  EWH
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