[Question #3047] Is it worth getting retested?

41 months ago
I had two unprotected encounters with a guy who is positive for hsv-2. Two weeks after our last encounter,  I started experiencing prominent nerve pain in both my legs—tingling, itching, stinging and aching.  Some lower back and butt tingles and bugs crawling all over body feeling.  Never experienced these feelings before.  About two days after, I had mild itching on my vulva with some white, odorless discharge.  No pain while peeing. While I was on my period, I felt very sensitive and felt a sharp pain once while taking out a tampon. That was the worst of my vaginal symptoms. 

I went to my gyn as soon as my period ended (about two weeks since nerve symptoms ended). She did not see any lesions inside or out so she did not want to test me for herpes. I did test positive for yeast.  One week after my appointment, I started feeling pain near my left ovary and back. I do have HSV-1 so I started taking my Acyclovir Rx to see if it went away.  It did help. 

About week after,  I started feeling the nerve stuff again but more like electric shocks and tingles. Much less severe pain-wise. No vaginal itching or discharge but sometimes a random, fleeting, mild burning feeling. The ovary and back pain returned about two days after that. I went directly to the gyn and again she did not find any lesions inside or out so I got blood work done. 

M  hsv-1/2 igm came back positive and my hsv-2 igg was negative. Taken 8 weeks after the last sexual encounter.  My gyn says I  have hsv-2.  Is it worth getting retested at 12 weeks to see if the hsv-2  igg shows up? 

Thanks in advance for your answer! 



Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
The IgM test is terrible and the CDC says never to use it.  It has many false positives - I would say, in my experience, 8 or 9 times out of 10 the positives on this test are false positives - that is, the people don't seroconvert to positive on the IgG test which is the one to pay attention to.  If you are negative 8 weeks out, there is about an 80% chance that you will stay negative at 12 weeks.  I am always shocked when physicians in 2017 still order IgM tests in spite of all the information to the contrary that it should not be done.  Herpes does not cause ovary pain.  But certainly other STI's can cause ovarian pain - were you tested for other STIs?

Terri
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41 months ago
I was only tested for a UTI, which was normal. 

Before sleeping with the guy who had hsv-2, I had a full panel and all other testing done, which came back negative (including the IgM) except for the hsv-1, which  I knew I had. He was the first and last person I've slept with after the results of the full panel.  Shortly after I was laid off and lost my insurance. I am paying out of pocket so I only was tested for herpes.  Because of his candor with herpes, I wasn't really concerned about other STIs. I know it's still a possibility. 

Are my symptoms such as the nerve sensations/pain and back pain normal for hsv-2?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
you know, many people describe these symptoms to me on these forums but I would take an educated guess and say that 90% or more of those people who describe these exact symptoms and subsequently test with appropriate timing post a concerning encounter test negative by IgG for HSV  - they do not have herpes.  You have a few weeks to go for a final test but statistically, I am going to bet that you are not infected with HSV2.  Do not take antiviral medicine between now and that test if you want the most accurate test possible.

Terri
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41 months ago
Thank you for your feedback and advice. I will get retested at 12 weeks. 

I was able to get the actual numbers for my results this morning: 
My hsv-2  igg was negative <0.91 
My hsv-1/2 igm combo was high 1.71 

Does this high igm give the test any more validity? 

Thank you again in advance since this is my last follow up question. Hope all is well. 


Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
The IgM test likely has no validity.  I will keep this topic open until you post your 12 week IgG results for me here.

Terri
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