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sunparakeet

Waiting for my test results...

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This will be REALLY long...I apologize! But I have many questions and concerns. I am a 24 year old otherwise healthy Female.

I started having some weird symptoms down there on Monday, so I made a visit to the doctor. She told me it was herpes and I am just waiting for the test to come back so I can find out if it is Type I or Type II.

Anyway, I have a couple questions. After breaking down (emotionally) in the doctor's office, I decided to do some research and that's all I have been doing since then. I am trying to stay positive.

I don't have a very open relationship with my mother but I know that she has Herpes, I do not know what type but I have seen her medication so I know she has it. Do you think that I could have gotten it from her, years ago, and just never had an "outbreak"?

Another thing is that for the last 5 or 6 years, I have had reoccurring bladder infections/UTIs. Perhaps twice a year. The first time, I went to the doctor and I was diagnosed based on explaining my symptoms but no tests were ever done, and I was just prescribed an antibiotic. Now I have been thinking that maybe all those times, they were really herpes outbreaks that I was just assuming were UTIs, because I was never actually "tested" for that. And every time I thought I had a UTI since then, I just self-medicated with antibiotics and the symptoms would go away within a week.

Now I am thinking that if I didn't have herpes from my mother, that I got it from a particular ex-boyfriend, because the first time I had (what I thought was) a UTI was shortly after we began dating.

Also, I have been reading that outbreaks can happen due to stress. Well to put it mildly I have been more stressed out than I have ever been in my life during the past few weeks. Could this have caused my outbreak? I am now on a 10-day perscription of Acyclovir but I will go back to the doctor on Friday to see what my test results say.

Also...I have been seeing the same man for over two years. He has never to my knowledge shown herpes symptoms. But I never was sexually active when I had the "UTI" or whatever it really was. How do I tell him? What do I say? I think I am going to print out some literature to show him what this all means for me/us but I am just terrified of how he is going to react, if he is going to leave me or not want to touch me ever again, etc etc. He is a very kind and mature, understanding man but I have never had to break news like this to him. And I feel like I have to tell him, I briefly entertained the idea of trying to hide it but I have always been honest with him and it is not fair to him for me to keep it a secret.

Basically I have a lot of thoughts and I am trying to stay positive but I have a lot of unanswered questions.

Thanks everybody.

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Hi Sun,

I am recently diagnosed and still learning all about this myself. Not sure about catching it from ur mom but I am actually in the process of seeing a urologist because I too average about 2 UTIs a yr although sometimes I feel like one is starting and I just use an oveer the counter product that is supposed to be used until you can see a dr. Anyway, after describing my symptoms to the Dr, they prescibe an antibiotic and my symptoms go away. However, when they send my urine out to be tested(as opposed to the quick test in the office) they seem to always be negative so they suggested I see a Urologist.

I disclosed to the Urologist that I was positive for HSV2 and asked if that would have any affect on these so called UTIs. He said that yes, it can definitely be causing these symptoms but until further testing, he wont know for sure. I am in the process of getting all these things done so as soon as I find out, I will let you know.

As for your boyfriend, it is very possible that he has herpes as well but just doesnt know it. Unless you've been tested for herpes in the past, I would think you may not know where you got it from. Its possible it could have been from another sexual partner but until you know what strain you have, it may be harder figuring out from who.

I would wait to see what strain you have before talking to him and learn all you can. Then when you do, I would advise he get tested as well.

Good luck to you!

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I started having some weird symptoms down there on Monday, so I made a visit to the doctor. She told me it was herpes and I am just waiting for the test to come back so I can find out if it is Type I or Type II.

What type of testing was done? Swab and culture? Type specific blood test? Both?

I don't have a very open relationship with my mother but I know that she has Herpes, I do not know what type but I have seen her medication so I know she has it. Do you think that I could have gotten it from her, years ago, and just never had an "outbreak"?

Just a note: Antiviral medications that are prescribed for herpes simplex are not used exclusively for that. It is possible she might be taking one for shingles (which is caused by the varicella zoster virus), for example.

On the other hand, the scenario you are proposing is not out of the question.

Another thing is that for the last 5 or 6 years, I have had reoccurring bladder infections/UTIs. Perhaps twice a year. The first time, I went to the doctor and I was diagnosed based on explaining my symptoms but no tests were ever done, and I was just prescribed an antibiotic. Now I have been thinking that maybe all those times, they were really herpes outbreaks that I was just assuming were UTIs, because I was never actually "tested" for that. And every time I thought I had a UTI since then, I just self-medicated with antibiotics and the symptoms would go away within a week.

This is also quite possible. Rather than the antibiotics having anything to do with helping your symptoms, it might have simply been that you were having recurrent herpes outbreaks that eventually resolved on their own.

Good reason for docs to actually do LABORATORY TESTS before prescribing treatments! (ARGH ---- I really hate that!!! :madd: )

Also...I have been seeing the same man for over two years. He has never to my knowledge shown herpes symptoms. But I never was sexually active when I had the "UTI" or whatever it really was. How do I tell him? What do I say? I think I am going to print out some literature to show him what this all means for me/us but I am just terrified of how he is going to react, if he is going to leave me or not want to touch me ever again, etc etc. He is a very kind and mature, understanding man but I have never had to break news like this to him. And I feel like I have to tell him, I briefly entertained the idea of trying to hide it but I have always been honest with him and it is not fair to him for me to keep it a secret.

You absolutely ought to tell this man! There is no reason to change your policy of integrity and honesty now. That would be a horrible thing to do to your relationship.

As for what and how to tell him...I would just go with the specific truth, exactly as you know it. Tell him what you have told us here. Tell him you started having some symptoms, so you went to the doctor about it. Tell him that you have been given a tentative diagnosis of HSV, and that you are awaiting the lab test results to confirm or not. (Or, you could wait until the results are back and then broach the subject once you know more.)

You can continue to tell him you are not sure about how you got it, which would be a very good segue into how 70% or more of those who have herpes do not know they have it because of either no symptoms, mild symptoms that are ignored, or symptoms that are confused with other conditions (as in your case, perhaps).

Having some printed material available, or having this web site at the ready, would be a good idea. He may or may not be ready to look at it immediately. If he is the guy you describe, he will likely look into it at some point.

I wish you all the best with this.

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Hi, thank you all for the advice and information. It was very helpful.

First to answer some questions that were asked -

They did a swab and culture and that is how they are testing for whether it is type I or type II. I did have blood drawn but it was to check for pregnancy because they said I should do that before they put me back on birth control. I have been off of BC for a year because I did not have insurance but I have insurance now thank goodness, otherwise I could not have afforded all these tests. Also I am not pregnant (well I knew that, but whatever!).

And I just assumed that my mom was taking the antivirals for herpes, yes, but she does have cold sores that have bothered her as long as I can remember so that is why I assumed the medicine was for herpes.

Also I just wanted to give a quick update - I went back to the doctor yesterday and she re-examined me and said that the Acyclovir was working "amazingly well" and that she could not even see any lesions down there because they had pretty much all healed. So I just went on the Acyclovir on Tuesday and by Friday I was almost healed. That's a good sign I think, because I was told that the first outbreak is usually the worst. Because if this was the WORST, then I will be able to deal with this no problem. I didn't have any pain except for the first couple of days when I had pain while urinating but all the pain was gone after a day on the Acyclovir and I just had what felt like minor menstrual cramps, but I did start my period today so the cramps could have been from that also.

My test results are not back yet but I am supposed to get a call when they are back (to see if it is type I or type II and also check for other STDs).

A question - is it safe to use tampons now? I think my outbreak is either over or is mostly over so if I don't have pain would it be alright to use a tampon?

Also - and maybe no one will be able to answer this - but with insurance does anyone know how much the antivirals would cost if I go on them for life (ie Valtrex)? My copay for the Acyclovir was only five dollars so I am hoping the Valtrex would be only five dollars a month if I go on that?

Thanks!

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Another update--

I just got my test results today and:

Everything was negative! They tested for HSV I and II by doing a culture test, and also tested for gonorrhea and chlamydia.

I am kind of confused though...because I thought that I did have HSV and it did explain a lot of symptoms that I have been having on and off for quite a while. I have a follow up visit on Friday to talk with my doctor though.

Is it possible to get a false negative through a culture test? Should I get tested again? I am relieved that it came back NEGATIVE but now I am wondering what the heck my symptoms were if not herpes! Actually everything is fine with me though and I am no longer showing symptoms. I'm just confused!

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It is possible to get a false negative through a culture especially the longer you wait after you see symptoms. If it's beginning to heal up, which some do in a few days, than you want to get in there as soon as possible. I was into my doctor by the 2nd day, saw a bump on Sunday, went in on a Monday.

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I went and got the culture done as soon as I could after I saw symptoms. I noticed symptoms about 4:00pm Monday and got the culture done Tuesday afternoon (last week). She said she saw quite a few lesions and it basically took her like 2 seconds to say, "yeah this is most likely herpes" so I think the symptoms were pretty severe/noticeable at the time when she took samples for the culture.

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Yeah, you definitely went in enough time. I don't understand how the swab could be negative if they were that new.

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Me either! But now I'm like, "what the heck do I have?"

What else should I be tested for?

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That's really bizarre! Especially since you started the meds and the lesions started going away. Usually it isn't as likely to get a false negative on swabs like you do with blood tests. I don't know what you should do now. Maybe realistic gal will have some ideas.

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False negative cultures can also be caused by mishandling by the lab folks. If the samples get too hot, for example, you can get an inaccurate result.

I would suggest you get a type specific herpes IgG antibody test in about 12 to 16 weeks, or get swabs again if you have symptoms pop back up again before that.

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Oh yeah, the virus has to stay "alive" I'm heard to get the best results from it.

So that could lead to a false negative as well.

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Me either! But now I'm like, "what the heck do I have?"

What else should I be tested for?

Alot of different things could cause lesions, even a yeast infection can occasionally cause sores.. Also, look up Bechet's syndrome..

Good luck:)

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Alot of different things could cause lesions, even a yeast infection can occasionally cause sores.. Also, look up Bechet's syndrome..

Good luck:)

Oh great, another thing for me to look up and stress over!

Just kidding (although I have become a bit of a hypochondriac when I have the internet at my fingertips). For the Bechet's disease it says you have to have mouth ulcers which I do not get. Well I do get canker sores every now and then but they usually happen as a result of me biting my lip/cheek. They are definitely not cold sores though.

Doctor tomorrow! I am anxious to hear what she has to say.

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Just in case anyone is still reading this or is interested -

I had a nice long discussion with the doctor today. She said since the symptoms were so severe when they took samples for the culture, it was unlikely that it would show a false negative. But she said if I wanted to wait 4-6 months I could get a blood test. So if I do not show any symptoms between now and 6 months from now, I am just not going to worry about it too much, get the blood test and go from there.

I also learned about something interesting. "Aphthous ulcer". Basically it is a canker sore (which I do get in my mouth pretty regularly). But it is not a cold sore, because it is not caused by the herpes virus. Actually no one really knows what causes it. BUT you can get them on your genitals AND you cannot spread it to your partner through sex or kissing.

So that's what we are saying it is. The doctor says that she only seen 10 or 11 cases like mine in her career as a doctor (so maybe once a year). And she said that she does remember cases like mine where she SWORE it was herpes but the tests came back negative.

So...no herpes! As far as we can tell! Basically the doctor told me that a lot of funky stuff goes on "down there" with women that sometimes it is really hard to narrow down WHAT is going on!

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Congrats on that! Lets hope that you aren't dealing with anymore painful symptoms!

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I had a nice long discussion with the doctor today. She said since the symptoms were so severe when they took samples for the culture, it was unlikely that it would show a false negative. But she said if I wanted to wait 4-6 months I could get a blood test. So if I do not show any symptoms between now and 6 months from now, I am just not going to worry about it too much, get the blood test and go from there.

I agree you should do that for your peace of mind, and to be sure that if you do have herpes you know it so you can inform any potential intimate partners.

Be sure to get a type specific blood test that checks for IgG antibodies. Do not accept a test that only checks for IgM.

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Hi, I just want you to know that I'm 24 year old female as well and just found out this week too. My life has been turned upside down. I feel tainted and unequal to everyone around me. I wish I could help you with info but I myself don't know that much right now. I'm sorry about your mother. I hope someone comes into your life that you feel comfortable to talk to. I think I'm going to start seeing a counselor right now. I feel your pain, literally.

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Hi, I just want you to know that I'm 24 year old female as well and just found out this week too. My life has been turned upside down. I feel tainted and unequal to everyone around me. I wish I could help you with info but I myself don't know that much right now. I'm sorry about your mother. I hope someone comes into your life that you feel comfortable to talk to. I think I'm going to start seeing a counselor right now. I feel your pain, literally.

Hey, don't get down! You know what, 2010 has really done a number on me. I was unemployed for 6 months, had to move back in with my parents and nearly kicked out, got offered a job and moved to a new town, THEN had them tell me that they didn't have funding for me (so basically drained my savings dry by trying to swallow my pride and live on my own), got rejected for over 30 jobs, got rejected from grad school 3 times...and then this herpes thing.

Oh and I felt like I had the word HERPES tattooed on my forehead! I thought everyone could tell...

And guess what? I f***ing lived! And you will too. You will be happy again soon! Hey if you ever feel like talking you can email me...it's my username @ gmail.com.

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