Avatar universal

What besides herpes can cause blisters on palate, lips + sore throat?

Been having this problem for 5 months now: lots of small, clear, fluid filled blisters on hard palate. Palate and throat are sore, with lots of red veins showing. Blisters sometimes shrivel/dry up, but every time I think they're going away, they soften again, swell and hurt, and some more blisters show up. Palate is now yellow with tissue swelling and thickening (scarring?) where the group of worst blisters is.

Keep having flare ups of clear blisters and a red, sore throat. First DNA swab test was positive for herpes type 1.
A month later I also got small blisters on my upper lip and nose (for the first time). Got tingling before they showed up, so didn't doubt they were cold sores. Those blisters are almost gone now after 4 weeks.

Been put on Valacyclovir 1000 mg pd for 2 weeks, then 1500 mg for 1 week. Did not help much (I only started after 4 months of having this problem though, so much too late). Went off the meds for a week and then had the DNA swab test done again. This time it was negative?! Cannot believe this! If not herpes, what else can cause all this??

Blood test showed my body is fighting something, and I know my immunity is a bit low. So could it be another virus, bacteria? Oral allergy? Maybe it IS herpes, but DNA test was false negative (is that possible)? I'm desperate. My doctor doesn't have a clue. What could this be other than oral herpes? Any suggestions?      

Please help!  I'm scared I will be stuck with this problem forever. :(
1 Responses
Sort by: Helpful Oldest Newest
207091 tn?1337709493
I'm sorry this has been so awful for you.

It does sound like it could be herpes. The swabbing can be tricky - it depends on how good of a sample was taken, how old the sores/blisters were, etc.

One thing you can do that may help is take a type specific IgG blood test. If it's positive for hsv1, it doesn't totally answer if this is all herpes, but if it's negative, it will help rule it out.

Have they done any other testing than herpes, like a biopsy or anything? What blood test showed you were fighting something - increased white blood cells? Did they do any other tests?

Starting valtrex late wouldn't make it less effective. It may be that you just don't respond to it. You can try acyclovir (which is a very similar medication to valtrex, but our bodies are weird, and some respond better to acyclovir than to valtrex), or famvir, which is a different antiviral altogether.

It could also be herpes, and something else along with it, like strep, and that's keeping the herpes really active. Have they done a throat culture or done anything other than a specific herpes test to see if anything else is identified?

I hope you get some answers and relief soon.
Helpful - 0
Also, to clarify - when you say the DNA testing, do you mean the PCR swabs? Those look for herpes DNA, but I want to make sure you got the correct swabbing done.
Sorry for the late reply. I've been very busy, so I forgot to answer. I really appreciate your response! Thank you! :)

In answer of your questions:

"Have they done any other testing than herpes, like a biopsy or anything? What blood test showed you were fighting something - increased white blood cells? Did they do any other tests?"

-- No, they have only done a PCR swab test so far. I hope to get more testing done soon, when I visit a dermatologist.
My blood test showed lymphocytes + eosinophile granulocytes were too low (ESR, thrombocytes, leukocytes and erythrocytes were normal). From what I understand this can indicate that my body is fighting some kind of infection.

If you have any more tips for me (or anyone else has), please let me know! This condition really has an impact on the quality of my life. :(
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Ear, Nose & Throat Community

Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Think a loved one may be experiencing hearing loss? Here are five warning signs to watch for.
Discover the common causes of and treatments for a sore throat.
Learn about what actually causes your temperature to spike.
Find out which foods you should watch out for.
Family medicine doctor Enoch Choi, MD helps differentiate between the common cold and more threatening (bacterial) infections
Dr. Steven Park reveals 5 reasons why breathing through your nose could change your life