Herpes Community
27.3k Members
Avatar universal

burning inside tip of penis

a little over a month ago, i had unprotected sex with a female who approximately 2 weeks later was diagnosed as having HSV2.  i still haven't presented with any of the obvious symptoms such as bumps or warts on my penis, but i've experienced an on-again off-again burning sensation just inside of the tip of my penis.  most of the time i would say it's simply irritating, though for a day or two about a week ago it did move up to what i would call painful.  i went to the doctor on the second "painful" day and he ran blood tests for herpes, chlamydia and gonorrhea, all of which came back negative, and he also did a urine analysis, which came back clean.  after seeing my doctor, over the holiday weekend, i pulled the tip of my penis apart and looked in (it hadn't occurred to me to do this prior for some reason) and saw what looked like might've been a cold sore type wound about 1/4 of an inch inside.  i couldn't really get a very good look at it, but it appeared grayish.  the area immediately around it didn't appear to be any more red than the nearby skin.  i had actually assumed it had healed up and was going away because over the past weekend, it didn't bother me at all, but then suddenly today the burning sensation has come back again (to irritating level, not painful).  i haven't had any sexual activity since october 30, which was when i slept with the girl that turned out to have herpes.

i realize that a blood test for herpes can come back with a false negative if done too soon.  my blood test was done approximately 4 1/2 weeks after the exposure, but am i wrong in thinking that, since i had this sore (assuming it is herpes) for a full week prior to testing, wouldn't i have developed antibodies by then?  also, why would the burning go away for upwards of 3 days and then return?  any thoughts/suggestions are welcome and appreciated.  thanks.
209 Responses
1086168 tn?1285357044

Looks like you and I have simular symptoms.  Around 3 weeks after a possible contact I bagan to have a slight stinging/burning sensation at the tip.  I saw 2 red spots that went away in about 2 days.  The stining and burning waxed and weened for the next 7 weeks.  In this time I've had tests done at 4 weeks and 7 weeks, both negative for everything including HSV 1 and 2.  The red spots inside my urethra have never returned, and just recently my symptoms have started to go away.  I've been wondering how much of this was anxiety driven causing chronic pelvic pain syndrome like urethraits....  Although it worries me to see the simularities in your and my symptoms (I don't know the HSV status of my possible cause).

To answer your questions,

Most people that have HSV 1 and 2 will test positive between 12 and 16 weeks so that is what they recomend for testing.  However, there is some new research that shows with the herpeselect test (IGG) that 60-75% of people will test positive by 6 weeks.  Around 1 in 5 don't build enough antibodies until 6 months to test positive.  

I've read alot about herpetic urethratis and from what I've seen the symptoms are supposed to be very painful...  Grace loves this one, but "like pissing on the third rail on the subway" or pudding if you mistype like I do :)  Basically it's supposed to be extremely painful.  

I'm really hoping that neither of us have herpetic urethratis and that the symptoms are just anxiety driven.  When I've described this situation to Grace and others, they don't think it sounds like herepes.

When did your symptoms appear?  Have your sores returned?  If they do, go back to the doctor and have him do a viral swab.  You'll be able to know right then if you have herpes.

Feel free to send me a PM if you want to talk more off line.

Avatar universal
thanks for the response, borat!

i haven't seen any red spots at all, and the sore that i thought was healed is, evidently, still there.  i tried to get a better look at it today, and it's still a grayish color in the exact same spot as i'd noticed about a week ago.  it doesn't appear to have gotten any larger or smaller, it's just idling,  so to speak.  my doctor is on vacation tomorrow, of course, so i have to wait until monday before i can see him.

i've been very anxious about this whole situation, too, and had thoughts wondering just how much of this was in my head and how much of it was the real deal.

in regards to the herpetic urethritis, what little i can find on it mentions discharge and pain during urination, which i've had neither.  the burning sensation i have is very random, and as i said, not to the point of being painful necessarily, just very irritating.  if i'm up and walking around and busy with something, i don't even really notice it.  it's just when i'm sitting or laying down doing nothing that i really start noticing it.
1086168 tn?1285357044
Sorry to hear your doctor won't be around tomorrow...  If you can get the spot swabbed you may be able to get a clear answer one way or another.  I've read a bunch of posts on hear from guys with urethral pain, usually burning on the tip.  From what I've gathered a bunch of them are guilt ridden or have extreme anxiety.  I would put myself in the extreme anxiety box and hope that's what's creating the symptoms.  It's kind of humorous, but after I read that research on 60-75 % of people with HSV test positive at 6 weeks...  my symptoms seemed to completely withdrawl.  The thing that makes me conitnue to worry about this (besides a stinging and burning penis tip) is the two little sores I saw around 10 weeks ago.  I haven't found any good sources for what may of cause those to occur and hence I'm in the same place as you.  I will be taking a HSV test again next week (will be close to 12 weeks).  Hopefully it will be negative, and I'll pass you the results.  

If you are still in contact with the girl you had sex with, I would ask her if she had an outbreak or symptoms anywhere near your sexual encounter.  While she could of had asymtomatic shedding, you're chances of contracting it are smaller if she didn't have any visible sores or physical symptoms.  

Do your best to try and relax (trust me I know this is hard to do) and not think too much about it.  The mind is a powerful thing and can cause all kinds of symptoms to pop up that are not related to an actaul illness.  

By the way, did the symptoms start before or after you found out she tested positive for HSV 2 and how long after the possible exposure did the symptoms start?
Avatar universal
well, the story with the girl goes that she and i had intercourse on october 30.  on november 11, she started in with what i presume were prodromal symptoms - low grade fever, fatigue, that lot.  by november 13, she had started to break out with blisters and sores, and by november 16 it was full tilt boogie.  she said it felt like someone had taken a sandblaster to her naughty bits.  and this was her initial/primary breakout that happened, so i'm really not sure if i could've got it from her prior to her prodromal symptoms, or if maybe i contracted some kind of weird bacterial infection from her and that's what's causing this, or... what.  i'm assuming for the time being that it's herpes, though.  when we were outlining the timeframe, she said she'd slept with another guy on november 9, and he broke out with blisters and sores almost immediately; i think she said it was 3 days after intercourse that he broke out.

anyway, my symptoms started not quite a week after hers did (she was positively diagnosed with hsv on november 16) - november 18, i believe, was the first day i noticed a burning sensation, which would've been 19 days after the exposure.
1086168 tn?1285357044
So the guy that she slept with on the 9th could of had herpes and not known it, and given it to her...  or vice versa.  From what I've read, close to three weeks is a bit delayed if you are going to have and outbreak after being infected, but the norm is 2 - 20 days so who knows....  For me it was three weeks until I started to feel the stinging and then burning.  If you can't get to your doctor, any planned parenthood can take you as a walk in or via appointment.  Trust me, from someone who can't get a sore swabbed and know the answer for sure for a while....  I would go to PP and get the test done.  

Your symptoms started after finding out she was HSV postive, so the anxiety thing still plays...  Hopefully that's all it is.  

Grace, as I'm no expert on this subject....

Please chime in and tell us nutcases what you think.
Avatar universal
oh, i don't know how i could've possibly forgotten to include this - the girl found out a guy she had dated previously (through the month of october) had herpes, so he's very likely the person who gave it to her.  she didn't sleep with him through the entire month save for twice, both times around the very end of the month, october 23-26, somewhere in there.  so that's very likely when she was exposed, because she gets tested for stds roughly every three months anyway, and she had tested clean as recently as october 1.

of course, it's totally possible she had gotten herpes before then and it just wasn't showing in her test results because she might not have had it 6+ weeks yet, but based on what i've read, i don't think it follows the norm for her to have gotten it way back in august or september and then have a huge initial outbreak in the middle of november.  or am i wrong there?  (cause i'm certainly no expert here)
1086168 tn?1285357044
Well, the norm for herpes seems to be there isn't one.  They say the norm for a symptoms to poop up is 2-20 days, although I believe most people that do have breakouts have them in the first week or so.  With that being said, people can have HSV2 and be asymptomatic for years, and have a random break out later.  Regardless, it sounds like the chain went this guy to her then to the next guy and you may be in the middle.  It's frustrating that there is so little information about herpetic urethratis.  I only found one post from around 2006 on another forum that details two guys that have it.  No discharge, no external sores, just really bad urethratis.  However, unlike us, they have extreme pain and they both seemed to have a symptom like battery acid travelling through the urethra following ejaculation.  Other than that I found a medical journal from the 1930's depicting an obreak of urethral herpes in a male.  Very different from what we are going through.  

The best thing you could do is go and get the sore swabbed before it goes away...  that way you'll know for sure if you contracted it or not.  Seeing how we seem to have simular symptoms, I'll let you know how things work out with me next week.  12 weeks isn't a 100%, but it's in the thick of the bell curve for people buildig enough anti-bodies to test for HSV2.  

Grace is like an angel on this website...  I'm sure she will chime in when she gets a chance and tell you what she thinks.  Keep posting if you have any other questions and I'm hoping the best for you brotha.

1086168 tn?1285357044

poop up.

To bad there isn't an edit function on here :)
1086168 tn?1285357044

after posting with you my symptoms returned..  I've had a stinging to burning right at the tip since around 12 last night.  Not sure if it's the anxiety again, or just the cycle that's been going on for 10 long weeks.  

Hope you're feeling better today,


Avatar universal
i'm sorry to hear that, borat.  i've got some very,  very mild burning this morning, which is basically par for the course for me by this point.  i called my doctor's office this morning, hoping maybe to get an appt with one of the other doctors in the building, but nobody had anything open (the clinic closes at 1 on fridays).  i'm not sure where the local planned parenthood chapter is, but i probably couldn't get away from work as it is anyway... looks like i'm waiting until monday.
Avatar universal

     I too had the same symptons as you. about 2 days after sex, I tip of my penis hurt reall bad. the first night was unbearable, but later was tolerable. about 3 1/2 weeks I got tested for HSV1 and 2. problem is I don't know what type of blood test. I was told all blood test were 100%. When I went to get tested the doctor didn't see anyhing visible. I got my test back and it just said it was positive for HSV 1 and 2. No numbers and my Dr told me that there were no such things as false positive. I knew I had HSV1 but not 2. I am really hoping my test was a false positive. I am going to get a type IgG test when  I get back to the states. It's been 8 weeks and my penis still burns a little. but not as much. The possitive herpe test really freaked me out. and started getting tingling feeling. But I believe that is comming from anxiety. I was told burning on the tip of your penis for that long is not a herpe sympton.
1086168 tn?1285357044
Grace just replied to my other post " urethral herpes? Please help". She still doesn't think this is herpes.  Your positive test could if been an Igm test that tend to have alot if false positives, and if you don't know if they tested for HVS 2 or not there's no way your doctor can say you have it.

When you get back get an igg test,

I'll let you know how this works out from my side, if it is anxiety then hopefully it may be for you guys as well.

Mirvus,  you'll be the first one with results if they do a viral swab on Monday.  Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Have an Answer?
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Here are 16 facts you need to know to protect yourself from contracting or spreading a sexually transmitted disease.
How do you keep things safer between the sheets? We explore your options.
Can HIV be transmitted through this sexual activity? Dr. Jose Gonzalez-Garcia answers this commonly-asked question.
A breakthrough study discovers how to reduce risk of HIV transmission by 95 percent.
Dr. Jose Gonzalez-Garcia provides insight to the most commonly asked question about the transfer of HIV between partners.
The warning signs of HIV may not be what you think. Our HIV and STD expert Sean Cummings reports in-depth on the HIV "Triad" and other early symptoms of this disease.