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ImHere

Can I just assume I have it?

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ImHere

hello, i'm new here and here is my situation

About 7 years ago I lost my virginity and a few months afterward I would get irritating and painful lesions in the same exact spot, so I went to the OBGYN who did a culture of the lesion, she said it looked very much like herpes so I just assumed I had it and used the samples of valtrex that she gave me while they waited for the results. I was in college at the time and didn't come back for the results because i went back to school in the fall over about 3 years later I had a new partner and told him about what i assumed I had and he accepted me but let me know i should find out for sure. I go to that same dr office and get an STD screening and mention that old culture that was done and she tells me "nope, it was negative" and told me that I may have something called follicolitus (sp?) some sort of inflammation. I was overjoyed but it kept nagging at me that that couldn't be right because though I don't get many outbreaks anymore and they aren't really painful (maybe once or twice a year) it happens in the same exact spot and looks just like herpes. I never get sores often enough to catch it in time to get tested accurately so should I just keep on the way i've been doing and tell my next partner about my problem as if i have been diagnosed? I'm not sure what to do here.

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chay5

I am in the same situation, more or less. I get a pimple or 2 down there from time to time, no pain or tingling, nothing crusting over, no typical symptoms. I had swab cultures done 3 times and blood test, all came back negative. Nevertheless I get these "pimple/s" in the same spot and one doctor said only herpes does this. In addition, swab cultures and even blood tests can give false negatives. Herpes does not have to look exactly like a typical OB picture. So I have accepted that I have herpes, what else can it be, there is no other disease with these symptoms. Another thing, on one of my fingers, once in a while I get some thing looking like a small but very deep paper cut that is PAINFUL like hell and THIS feels like real herpes, I mean all this pain and discomfort is there.

I can have more blood tests done to make sure, one of them will probably catch something (maybe I have finger herpes - but no herpes down there?), but it's expensive and I don't have insurance...As far as testing is concerned, I feel like I have done enough. So now I am concentrating on boosting my immunity, eating better and getting in better shape. I have had other health problems during this time as well, so everything could be pointing to how weak my body is and that might be the problem. So I am trying to fix this.

What would I do in my situation (I have not been formally diagnosed with herpes) - I would tell my potential partner the truth, that I have not been formally diagnosed with herpes but the symptoms indicate that I do have it. There is some small chance I don't have it, perhaps it's some kind of acne/dermatosis, but it would be rather unusual. So that's what I would say.

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ImHere

I feel for you because i know what its like being confused and I appreciate the suggestions. I actually did believe the diagnosis she gave me for a while because she told me that it is something that can happen when women shave and its like some kind of ingrown hair problem and i did notice it would happen when i did that so when i had those what i guess is very mild outbreaks that it was just the follicle inflammation but i recently had surgery and I had a painful outbreak that let me know it cant be the follicle and that it has to be herpes. And to add further problems my recent ex and i with whom i am still close with were intimate when we were dating but i didn't tell him because i think part of it was the excitement of believing what the dr. told me but with this new outbreak i truly believe i have it and i need to talk to him about it, it is really scary

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helied2me

Hey ImHere,

Have you ever had a blood test done? If you can't get a viral culture done in the required time frame ask your doctor to give you a lab order for an IgG type specific antibody test for HSV-1 and HSV-2, just be sure the doctor doesn't order a combination test as it wouldn't tell you which type it is.

If you have a healthy immune system you should show antibodies since it's been quite some time since your symptoms started. Maybe this will give you some answers.

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ImHere

okay well on thursday I went to the clinic because I thought I was having an outbreak. The nurse visually examined it and told me she would not need to do a blood test or culture because she says it doesnt have the apperance of herpes at all. she told me what I was suffering from what is called "vaginal acne". I feel somewhat relieved but I still want to go to have some blood work done. I was thinking about Planned Parenthood, is the HSV test expensive? I do carry Cigna insurance though.

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chay5

Hi Imhere,

good to hear from you. Funny how you are going through similar things I've been going through. Some doctors would take one look, ask if it occurs in the same spot and pronounce "it's herpes-no need to test", and then some other doctors would say that it doesn't look like herpes at all and so no need to test and just forget about it. I actually had to beg them each time to do swab culture test. I think, sorry to say that, that OB Gyn doctors do not know much about herpes symptoms. How can they say (after years in medical school) "it doesn't look like H", when it's enough to do a simple google search and immediately you learn that herpes symptoms range from typical - to 1 acne like pimple - to one tiny red spot with no pain at all.

I found it frustrating, how doctors approach this issue. I mean, they just don't care to get you tested or not and it's hard to convince them to have you tested. And it is even harder to tell them what kind of test you want

Anyway, I have never heard about vaginal acne. That's interesting. Especially because I have had some adult acne on my face in recent years ...I had a blood test for herpes done but the doctor didn't tell me what kind of test it was. Maybe I should have another blood test done, but I am just so tired of trying to convince a doctor to testing me, I feel much better just accepting I have HSV.

I think what they recommend now as the most reliable, is something called Herpes type specific G based IgG antibody test Type 1 and Type 2 (HerpeSelect) I also found on internet that

There are several type-specific tests on the market but currently only two manufacturers offer FDA-cleared methods based upon glycoprotein G technology needed for an accurate diagnosis. They are the HerpeSelect HSV type-1 and HSV type-2 tests from Focus Diagnostics, which have been in use for several years, and recently released tests from Trinity Biotech. A third test not currently marketed in the US, the POCkit® HSV type-2 assay, does not test for HSV type-1

Ask your healthcare provider to confirm that the serology test ordered for you meets the following criteria:

· Type-specific for HSV type-1 and HSV type-2

· Based on Glycoprotein G technology (this will be stated in the kit insert)

One of doctors on his website states that combined herpesselect test net costs $45, but the doctor's visit can cost $200, as we know (depending where you live).

There are some websites/labs where you can order your own herpes test anonymously, unfortunately I haven't been able to locate one near where I live. Maybe you are more lucky. If you can order a test directly like that, it would be probably much less expensive than going through a doctor.

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eatyourveggies

Chay, you are such a smart woman from what I gather from this forum. Why on Earth after 3+ negative tests would you keep thinking you have H? It seems very unlikely after that many tests! And you don't have the usual symptoms. I only wish my test came back negative and I could move on with my life!

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chay5

hey, thank you so much! I always thought I was a smart woman, but then I got involved with that man...:oops:

Well, I think I have HSV, because I have recurrent symptoms in the same spot. I also have all other symptoms that never seem to go away, such as yeast-infection-like symptoms, that lots of people here seem to have.

Also, when I first got this "pimple" when I was pregnant, the doctor immediately put me on HSV medication and told me it was HSV. Maybe he did it just in case and just visually, I don't know. At that time I had so many other problems that I didn't really understand the implications and also I didn't insist on knowing whether he did a test or not, so I didn't make sure, but I assumed he did.

Now I hear that when doctors notice sth towards the end of pregnancy, they might put a woman on meds just in case, I don't know.

Come think about it this doctor was acting strange; initially he was friendly and then once he said it looked like herpes he just didn't want to talk to me or look at me any more :(.

Anyway, for a few years I felt like I was diagnosed with H, and then after those 3 tests that another doctor ordered (that I am sure were done) I felt like I cannot be 100% certain.

But the truth is, the sore continued to reappear all these years and in the same spot, so well, there is nothing else that medicine knows of that acts like that except for HSV.

So yes, I believe I belong here and I am fine with it :D.

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ImHere
Hi Imhere,

good to hear from you. Funny how you are going through similar things I've been going through. Some doctors would take one look, ask if it occurs in the same spot and pronounce "it's herpes-no need to test", and then some other doctors would say that it doesn't look like herpes at all and so no need to test and just forget about it. I actually had to beg them each time to do swab culture test. I think, sorry to say that, that OB Gyn doctors do not know much about herpes symptoms. How can they say (after years in medical school) "it doesn't look like H", when it's enough to do a simple google search and immediately you learn that herpes symptoms range from typical - to 1 acne like pimple - to one tiny red spot with no pain at all.

I found it frustrating, how doctors approach this issue. I mean, they just don't care to get you tested or not and it's hard to convince them to have you tested. And it is even harder to tell them what kind of test you want

Anyway, I have never heard about vaginal acne. That's interesting. Especially because I have had some adult acne on my face in recent years ...I had a blood test for herpes done but the doctor didn't tell me what kind of test it was. Maybe I should have another blood test done, but I am just so tired of trying to convince a doctor to testing me, I feel much better just accepting I have HSV.

I think what they recommend now as the most reliable, is something called Herpes type specific G based IgG antibody test Type 1 and Type 2 (HerpeSelect) I also found on internet that

There are several type-specific tests on the market but currently only two manufacturers offer FDA-cleared methods based upon glycoprotein G technology needed for an accurate diagnosis. They are the HerpeSelect HSV type-1 and HSV type-2 tests from Focus Diagnostics, which have been in use for several years, and recently released tests from Trinity Biotech. A third test not currently marketed in the US, the POCkit® HSV type-2 assay, does not test for HSV type-1

Ask your healthcare provider to confirm that the serology test ordered for you meets the following criteria:

· Type-specific for HSV type-1 and HSV type-2

· Based on Glycoprotein G technology (this will be stated in the kit insert)

One of doctors on his website states that combined herpesselect test net costs $45, but the doctor's visit can cost $200, as we know (depending where you live).

There are some websites/labs where you can order your own herpes test anonymously, unfortunately I haven't been able to locate one near where I live. Maybe you are more lucky. If you can order a test directly like that, it would be probably much less expensive than going through a doctor.

Thank you so much for the info, this is frustrating isn't it? I don't know why its so hard to get a doc or nurse to test you. I really feel conflicted because I want to be relieved but then again deep down I know its herpes and its just a matter of time before i can get a blood test to prove it. It seems she said she believes it to be genital acne because, and I don't mean to get grossly detailed, it contains whitehead puss which she says isn't typical of herpes. I don't know because i've had lesions with obvious whiteheads and some without so I think i will try to go to planned parenthood and get a blood test or try out the self order labs that you spoke of.

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BoxofRain

planned parenthood is great and does sliding scale fees which go by your income. My boyfriend got a physical there and a herpes blood test for IGm and IGG type1 and type 2 all for $85....he only works very little though, as he is progressively finishing a degree. But, my friend, who works an average 40 hour week and makes an average living, they said it would cost her $125 for the test and physical so it varies. They are a lot less cheaper than traditional doctor. Plus if you have insurance it might be in your favor anyhow. Good luck! get tested asap and finally know the truth. When you call planned parenthood say you want to make an appointment for a herpes blood test for type 1&2 and IGG and IGM, NOT a culture or anything other than a blood test. If you are insistent they will give a blood test but make it clear that is what you want and ONLY what you want.

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chay5

BoxofRain,

thank you so much for info about Planned Parenthood. I might very well take advantage of this.

I have just had some other lab tests done and got a bill from the lab for $575, this plus first doctor's visit: $175, plus another visit to discuss the results : $150, total would be: $900 It's really hard without insurance here...:(

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chay5

ImHere,

it could be also a combination of causes/conditions piled up ... Acne, herpes, eczema, yeast infection, some other vaginal infection - so it would be good to be able to eliminate at least some of them and narrow down the guilty party to 1.

Actually, I am not surprised it's sometimes so hard to get a certain diagnosis regarding what is happening down there. With all those so called "false negatives" given by some tests, what can be considered 100% reliable?

There is also one other thing you should know regarding IgG test. This test is very reliable to tell whether you have herpes antibodies and if you do, it means that you have been already exposed to herpes.

However, this test cannot guarantee, that your pimples/whiteheads/whatever you sometimes get in your genital area are caused by herpes.

It just can tell you if you have herpes antibodies.

The only test that can confirm that some sores/lesions are caused by herpes is a swab culture test.

So , even if you do this IgG test and it comes back positive for herpes, if what you have down there are symptoms that are not typical for HSV, it could still be just some kind of acne.

Is this crazy or what?

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LostGirl08

Hey I'm going through a very similar situation right now. I got a cold sore for the first time in my life recently after making the stupid mistake of kissing someone who had one (I didn't see it until the next morning). I also had intercourse with this person (Yes, I know very dumb as well). In my defense, I am a college student who was upset over a relationship ending and wasn't thinking clearly.

I was blood tested and tested positive for HSV1, which I guess I am okay with since from what I understand, many people test positive for that anyway. However, I am worried because I had a dry patch (not a sore or lesion) in my pubic region. I had it swabbed, came back negative..Also had the blood test around this time and only tested positive for HSV1. I have had this happen 3 times and had doctors look at it each time and tell me it's dry skin, but this is making me crazy! I've never had anything like it before and I am constantly paranoid about it. It lasts for maybe 2 days and then is gone. It doesn't really hurt much at all and I really have to be looking to even know it's there. I did not receive oral sex from this person, but am still so worried that I might have contracted HSV1 and HSV2 from him.

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chay5

LostGirl08 wrote

I am worried because I had a dry patch (not a sore or lesion) in my pubic region

I have read (a lot :)) about all possible symptoms of HSV2 (no symptoms, small red dots size of sharpened pencil tip, pimple-like, reddish patches, many kinds of sores), however, I have never read anywhere that HSV can cause a patch of dry skin.

I understand that when HSV virus activates, it attacts the skin cells and causes various degrees of inflammation.

Dry skin (unless it is a patch of red and inflamed dry skin), this really doesn't look like HSV.

Have you tried moisturizing this dry area?

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LostGirl08

Dry skin (unless it is a patch of red and inflamed dry skin), this really doesn't look like HSV.

Have you tried moisturizing this dry area?

well it does get a little inflamed but it's not anything major. i just keep on running to the doc when i notice it and keep on getting told it's dry skin. it's almost like the skin has flaked away/cracked a little. i put vaseline on it the last time and it is usually gone after a day or two. i notice no other symptoms when this has occurred.

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LostGirl08

Maybe I am just being paranoid after the shock of being diagnosed with oral hsv1...

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chay5
it's almost like the skin has flaked away/cracked a little. i put vaseline on it the last time and it is usually gone after a day or two. i notice no other symptoms when this has occurred.

Well, if it's gone after only one or 2 days of applying a gentle moisturizer, then definitely it cannot be HSV - HSV OBs take much longer.

So you are good to go :cool:

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