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Lots of "firsts" for me. First post,first outbreak? I am a married woman of over 22 years who has had no other partners in that time. My husband maintains that he has been "faithful as well. I developed an odd sensation on my genitals about 4 weeks ago which turned into small "pimples" within a few days. That progressed to a number of bumps that were VERY itchy. These bumps sort of clustered and stayed in the same area but didn't burst or scab. I also had some physical symptoms around the same time i..e fatigue, anorexia, generally feeling unwell but not really sick. I have never had any skin problems before. When I finally went to my Dr. some 2 to 3 weeks had passed and she said that my symptoms all sounded like genital herpes but my sores weren't sore enough or raw enough and lasted too long and that i was losing weight from worrying so I should "find the worry button and turn it off"!!!!!!! Then she said that when I developed open sores to come back for a swab, otherwise there were no blood tests or anything else she could do for me. She said that the virus could have been dormant in me or my husband for 22 years and then rolled her eyes. She said noone is going to tell me whether or not my husband could have given me this (or vice versa) because no one wants to be a home wrecker. My husband has had no symptoms that he is aware of. I would REALLY appreciate any input you guys may have. I am going a little crazy here. Thanks for your help. ms.

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It's possible for the virus to have been dormant for that long... just very unlikely. Do you and your husband regularly have oral sex? That is a much more probably way for you to have gotten genital herpes.

As for your doctor saying that there's no blood tests... there are, and you should get it. If you've already have had it for 22 years, you will test positive for herpes. If it's a recent infection, the tests for herpes won't show anything, but if you get tested again in 3 months, and it's positive, then you'll be able to know where you got it.

Of course, there is a possibility that it's not even herpes at all, and just some sort of skin irritation. Really, the best advice I have for you is to go get a full STD test (make sure you ask for herpes type-specific blood test), and maybe this time go to a physician that specializes in STDs/skin matters. Good luck! Oh and I would also suggest giving your partner the benefit of the doubt for time being.

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Viruses are fickle things, they have no predictable life cycle and they can trigger at the drop of a dime. Everyone who catches a virus will react differently to it...in fact, some people can carry a virus for a lifetime and never have a single symptom. It is VERY possible that your husband has been carrying it since before you were married and you've had it for a while and just never had a noticable OB or you just got lucky and he wasn't shedding the virus when you were having sex previously. It's not entirely unheard of for one partner to be carrying the virus in a marriage and their partner never catches it, despite taking no preventative measures! If your marriage is one you're happy in and you trust your husband, I really wouldn't worry over the possibility of him having cheated on you.

As for the blood tests, there are a couple on the market, though when I was still in med school I did a rotation up in Canada and (for some reason) your health care system didn't offer them (this was three years ago, so that may have changed). If you find that this is still the case, there are several American labs that will gladly test your blood and mail the results to you. Simlpy, contact them and find out how much and what types of tubes your blood draw needs to be in, visit your local clinic, have them pull up the blood and send it off. The antibody tests you will want to have are known as IgG and IgM. I imagine without the aid of insurance the tests will run around $100 USD.

Best of luck, I hope things work out well for you.

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