[Question #1613] Herpes

44 months ago
I had unprotected vaginal sex with a girl about a month ago. One week later i found a lone pimple at the base of the penis on the border of my pubic hair. It did not hurt or itch and i had no noticeable other symptoms. I beleived it to be an ingrown hair so took a small hair i could see in it out with tweezers. Whilst i somethines get spots in my pubic hair the position and appearance of this spot looked unfamiliar. Although it only looked like a small red spot. It didnt have any type of blister. However, it did not heal immediatley, so i went to my gp 2 days later who said it did not look like herpes and that he would bet it was not, but that he couldnt be 100% sure so gave me some acoclovir for 5 days just incase. As it was christmas no gum clinics were open for a swab test. By the time i got to one the next week, the red spot had almost healed, it didnt scab, it just accumulated some dead skin and faded away, although there was some slight redness around it. The gum clinic doctor looked at me and said it was very unlikely to be herpes as i hd no other symptoms and just one spot. It has been 3 weeks since i noticed the spot now and there is almost no sign of irritation in the area now. My dermotalogist says it looks like an area were i could have got some foliculitis. However i have felt some aches in my right leg and buttock, the side of my body the spot was on, and can still feel them now, although they havent been omnipresent. I do have a tendency to get andious about such things and often felt similar things before my exposure. Do you think this was foliculitis  or herpes? Both my dermotoligist and gum clinic doctor told me not to bother with a blood test but i would like to get tested.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
44 months ago
Having not seen you, I can't say if this might be herpes or not.  Did the "pimple" have any fluid in it"  and it was not tender and there was a single one and it didn't scab over?  This doesn't sound like herpes to me from your description, but  like your doctor, I can't say with any certainty.  It's good that your physician didn't think it was herpes - they were in the best place to get a better idea of what was going on there. However, assuming it was not herpes because there was a single lesion is not really correct.  With a first infection, we do often see multiple lesions, particularly in a person who already has an HSV 1 infection on board.  If testing would settle your mind, then be sure to get an IgG test, not IgM.  And certainly if another one shows up, be sure to get a swab test done right away. 

Terri
---
44 months ago
There wasnt any fluid relly, only some blood when i tweezed out the hair as i had to break skin, maybe a little pus but hardly any.  Are the feelings in my leg and buttock now a cause for concern ? The pimple wasnt tender at all, there is a hair growing again now where it was 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
44 months ago
When people are worried that they might have herpes, they sometimes start to notice all sorts of body sensations that they might not otherwise notice.  I'm wondering if that could be happening with you?  They aren't a cause of concern for me. 
It does sound far more folliculitis than herpes, in my opinion. 

Terri
---
44 months ago
I think this is possible, i read online that shooting pains in the leg and symptoms similar to sciatica are often seen in herpes patients and soon after began to notice. Is it worth me doing an igg next week? I think i will but what are the chances my results will be accurate? Is it also possible that taking acoyclovir will distort my results ? Thank you for getting back to me
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
44 months ago
The thing is that shooting pains in the legs by itself cannot be construed as herpes.  Sciatica is so very very common and the vast majority of the time has nothing to do with herpes. 
A month is too early for an accurate test, but if positive above 3.5 is likely accurate.  If you take more than 7-14 days of medicine, it can skew the results, yes.
The testing would provide you with a baseline result which is worth something if you do decide to test but at this point, it is not going to reliable if negative.

Terri
---