[Question #2703] Entering new relationship

41 months ago
Doctors/Nurse:

I had my first sexual experience with a older woman 3 years ago (I was 18 at the time) ---one time encounter and no encounters since that time.   The encounter only consisted of 10 seconds of vigorous oral sex [mouth encompassed entire penis] and then she masturbated me to orgasm (nothing else) ---her saliva acting as lubricant.  I did not notice any lesions on her mouth.  Next day, I experienced burning in genitals (balanitis I guess) that continued for a few months (never treated).  11 days following encounter I noticed a couple small red bumps on my shaft and then next day, Day 12, the bumps turned into a water blister that burst while I was showering and healed almost immediately.  I did not get a chance to swab unfortunately.  I tested with ELISA IGG for up to 3 months and all low negatives (.08 or lower for HSV1 and HSV2).  Of course, I am more concerned about HSV1 given the type of exposure.  At 4 months following the encounter, I obtained a Western Blot through the UofW and that also came back negative.  In 3 years, I've never seen another lesion like the initial one )I've been abstinent all this time).  I would like to start a new relationship and wondering if I should retake the Western Blot just to be certain. 

The receptionist at UofW stated that their test is 99% accurate but I am not sure if that is the case (is this the case?).  I don't want to expose a future partner if I do indeed have HSV1 and the test just didn't pick up my antibodies. 

Based on the symptoms, encounter, etc. does this smack of HSV1 to you?  

A second, confirmatory Western Blot may give me peace of mind.  I just want to feel certain that I won't be infecting anyone else in the future (I guess I could use condoms from now on).  By the way, I've never had oral cold sores in my life.  Your thoughts. 

Thanks.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
Given your limited sexual history and very short oral encounter, I believe strongly that you should believe the herpes western blot and can move on now without further worry.  But if another blot would give you greater reassurance and you can afford it, I see absolutely no reason not to do it.  The test if very accurate indeed and it the gold standard against which other tests are compared for accuracy.  There is no worry about false positives with the western blot and sometimes, this test is able to give people the reassurance that they need to move on sexually with a new partner. 

Terri
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