[Question #3296] Herpes or something else

37 months ago
A year ago, I had hsv-like symptoms including genital ulcers preceded by night sweats and swollen lymph nodes of my throat.  I was on two medications, one being pseudafed and the other erythromycin for the flu like symptoms. The night before the outbreak, I had vaginal discomfort and slight pain so I had to remove my tampon. It was very itchy as well. When I woke up I had severe pain when I urinated and thought it was a uti. The np said there were open sores but she said it didn’t look like herpes. She also said there was a grayish color to them. I got a culture test, a blood test, another culture test by my gyno the next day, another blood test for igg and igm antibodies, and 2 more blood tests 2 months after the outbreak. Every test including the cultures came back negative. What could have happened to me? Please help I have been going insane trying to figure it out and I never got a clear answer of what it was. 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
37 months ago
Puzzling.  It could have been some sort of bacterial infection or it could have been HSV 1 genitally and the IgG test didn't pick it up - the IgG test misses 30% of HSV 1 infections and 8% of HSV 2 infections compared to the gold standard western blot. 
How long did the sores last? 
If you want the most reliable antibody test that would be a herpes western blot antibody test. 

Terri
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37 months ago
The sores lasted for about a week.  So then could I completely rule out hsv 2?  I also have not had another outbreak at all since that happened. I am really hoping it was a bacterial infection. I went to a health clinic too and I explained to the np  what happened to me and she handed me a paper with information on non-sexually acquired genital ulceration and she said a month before I came in she saw someone who had the same issue. But I still wasn’t able to put my mind at rest because there’s no certainty that that is what it was. 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
36 months ago
I am concerned about genital sores that lasted a week.  If you were my patient in person, I would have ordered another IgG test at 12 weeks and if you got another sore of any kind, have it swab tested again for HSV.  I would also likely order the western blot if the IgG is negative for greater clarity.

Terri
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36 months ago
I don’t exactly remember how many days the sores lasted since it happened last year but I know it took about 5-7 days to feel completely better.  The sores appeared in early December and I got tested a day or two after. Then they retested everything in late February.  I went to a clinic a few days ago to get tested again and asked for the western blot test but the nurse told me that was only for HIV.  But if I went to my gynecologist would they be able to order it for me? I want to get that test done so I know for sure. 
Thank you 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
36 months ago
It is possible that you OB could help you - it requires obtaining a kit from the University of Washington, having your blood drawn, spun and shipped.  You could gather information and give it to our doc and see how it goes.  If you cannot get that done with your doc, I can help you at westoverheights.com on the home page via a video conference and study we are doing.   Let me know if I can help.  I do think you need clarification given a week's worth of sores present in the genital area.

Terri
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