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HSV-1 Confusion


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I was recently diagnosed with herpes. I requested that my doctor order blood work to determine which simplex (or both) that I am positive for. The results came back with me being HSV-1 positive only. My partner got tested as well and he also came back as being HSV-1 positive only as well. The only difference is that he has never had sores on his genitals. He's only ever had cold sores on his mouth like most everyone I know has, including me. I know that HSV-1 can be transmitted from the mouth to the genitals but I'm curious if it will be necessary for us to use condoms and dental dams from now on? Even though we're both HSV-1 positive, can I give him the genital version now? Please help - I find conflicting information everywhere I look and we're both very concerned about this.

Thanks for your help!

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yes, hsv1 can be genital also. yes, you can both transfer the virus to each other genitally. using dental dams, condoms, etc. is a choice you both have to make.

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more questions

So (and I'm sorry I sound like a 3 year old about this but it's all so new to me) even though I do have genital hsv-1, but he has oral hsv-1, I can still transfer it to his genitals when I'm not breaking out? From what I understand, shedding occurs much less often with hsv-1 than hsv-2. Even if I'm all clear, he might still get genital hsv-1? And could he end up with a more severe case on his face if he performs oral sex on me? It's hard to figure out how to live with this and keep him protected.:-) I appreciate the reply and look forward to receiving more information.


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Theres still a risk he could get it genitally from having sex with you, even when you dont have an outbreak, and even though he already has some antibodies against the type you have. It is still very possible so its a choice you will both have to make and decide if he is ok getting it genitally, which is a risk he will be at if you still have sex.

Now, in terms of him giving you oral sex........thats probably how you got hsv1 genitally, but since he already has it orally and you have it genitally it is a choice to continue letting him do it to you unprotected. Sometimes it can cause a person to get more severe outbreaks but somtimes it might not cause an increase at all in his oral outbreaks. Its a personal choice, but either way, still dont ever have sexual contact when he has an oral outbreak or you have a genital one, because that is prime spreadint time of live active virus. Hope this helps a bit.

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    • CHT
      Hello "FeelingLost".... your fears and concerns are understandable but, nothing you've described regarding the sexual encounter would cause you to contract herpes.... further, your symptoms are not herpes related.  Best of all, your doctor is correct, your results don't show any herpes here.  You can relax.... definitely have your GP take a look at things and see what might be causing the symptoms but, again, none of them are typical herpes related.  I wish you the best in terms of talking to your wife about this encounter.... hopefully she will understand and you both can work through this amicably.  We all make mistakes.... be careful not to beat yourself up too hard over this.... you can become so racked with guilt that you start imagining physical symptoms.  Best of luck.... and take care..... come back to the site if you have questions.
    • FeelingLost75
      Hi (I’m really scared and feel really disappointed in myself and worried about my future), I had oral sex with a condom almost 3 weeks ago and a massage parlor. I also received a hand job at the same time prior to putting a condom on, also may have rubbed my penis on her back a little. Did not touch her genitals I don’t recall any sores on her back. After the event she handed me a pice of TP and after I took off the condom I wiped my penis head to clear away the excess ejaculation…this is where I suspect I got infected, she had just gone pee and wiped and maybe touched a sore or something and then I got it on my penis from the tp? Idk. I’m just flailing.   After this I’ve had discomfort on the skin below the head of my penis and 4 bumps for 2 weeks now, the bumps don’t seem to have changed in size. I also had frequent urination for about a week and have had dull pain in my groin on and off. I also have some pins and needles on the sides of my abdomen/trunk that get worse when I go out in the heat or get dehydrated. I’ve had a lot of trouble sleeping, likely due to guilt and shame and worry about the future.   so I got one test done at 10 days from the event (idk know if this can tell me anything… the doctor assured me it was 100% correct and I don’t have herpes. I was not physically examined). I got a full panel std. neg for everything. HSV-1 results: IgG 0.3 / HSV-2 IgG 0.9 hsv-1 IgM = 2.2 hsv-2 IgM = 3.0 (Reference V. Negative: Less than 9.0 Borderline: 9.0 to 11.0 Positive: Greater than 11.0) I have an appointment with my GP on Thursday, hoping he can help. Will likely go to a std testing service tomorrow to see if I can get in an antiviral proactively. Plan to get tested again this week.    
    • TS4real
    • FeelingLost75
      How are you doing now?
    • TS4real
      May 13 ( day I will never forget).. a guy I was dating and I drank way to much and decided to have anal sex. We did use protection however, not enough lube, wasn’t done correctly and it was painful. So bad that I yelled out and fell off the bed. Anyway, oral was also performed on me anal and vaginal. Flash forward to 3-4 days after that. I was in the most intense pain I had ever felt. I went to a gyn she tool one look and said it looks like herpes. She swabbed me . 2 days after that, yes it’s HSV1 . I was still in pain, irritated anal area and vaginal area and It was unbearable.  today, I still have irritation and itchy and when I pass a bowel i’m in pain and the itch is crazy.     When I first was diagnoses the gyn gave me valtrex which I did not take bc I was in so much pain I could not move for 2 days.  Groin lymphs were swollen I had fever , tired etc.  I am wondering if I had taken the valtrex would it have kinda liked stopped the virus in it’s tracks enough to reproduce? Do people see a correlation between no more outbreaks and immediate initial valtrex  use ? I am 43, I never thought this wound happen as I am not a promiscuous person, I hardly date and I always use protection when I do have intercouse , have yearly std tests. I’m just so sad that i’m at this point right now . I’m trying not to get depressed but this is making my body feel miserable. I’m an avid runner and biker and mom of two teens. I feel like my life as I knew is over. I want to feel better already.
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