[Question #3800] Terrified

33 months ago
I had sex with someone late in february and someone else 3-4 weeks later and then started showing symptoms of herpes 2-3 weeks after that. Condoms were used in both encounters.  I later found out that the person I had sex with in February has been getting blisters on his penis but thinks it's an "allergic reaction" but I think he has herpes and gave it to me. I got tested by blood and swab and both came out negative. The blood test was done 6 weeks after my first sexual encounter (with the person that I think has herpes) and three weeks after the second encounter (i do not know if that person has herpes or not). The symptoms I am having is I get one sore/bump that gets crusty scabs and goes away. It doesnt necessarily look like a blister to me or an ulcer. And i dont get groups of sores and the one sore is always accompanied by tingliness on my groin. This has happened to me about 4-5 times now. I went and got swab tested right when I noticed a sore and it came back negative. But I still think I have herpes and am extremely depressed and panicked. Both doctors that saw my sores couldnt confirm that it was herpes or tell me what was going on.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
33 months ago
The thing is, condoms reduce transmission of herpes by 96%, so the likelihood that this is herpes, with negative swab and blood tests, is very low.  However, if he was the giver of oral sex to you, it is possible that you symptoms are HSV 1. But still, if the swabs are negative,that seems unlikely as well.  I would suggest that you continue to get swab tests of new lesions as they are arise, and try to see a dermatologist for a specific evaluation of the sores.  If you continue to have negative swab tests (and try to be certain they are PCR, not culture), I would suggest that you believe that this is not herpes.  But do try to see a dermatologist for these concerns.

Terri
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32 months ago
The swab test was a culture test. Also I worry that my blood test was done too early to find antibodies. Also my intense tingliness and itchiness of my entire groin and butt crack area will continue even after the sore has gone away. I did recieve oral sex in the first encounter but I never noticed a blister on his mouth. Also the fact that these symptoms started after I was celebate for months and then kept coming and going really seemed like herpes to me. Do you still believe that it is unlikely to be herpes?
32 months ago
Also the tingliness and itchness always starts when a sore appears and continues after it heals and it is not only in that area it is spread throughout my entire groin and butt crack. And the sore doesnt look like a water blister and isnt painful but it does leak fluid and get crusty and then form a scab or dont form a scab and heal and go away normally with in days. I had one that lasted about a week though.
32 months ago
The tingliness and itchiness will continue for about a week after the sore goes away. I'm sorry I know I mentioned the tingling twice already but I wanted to explain in greater detail.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
32 months ago
I was suggest that you speak with your clinician and see if they will give you swabs to gather at home and bring it back to them to send to the lab after the swabbing is completed. We did this with our patients all the time and that'll allow them to gather a sample at the very beginning of a symptom. It is also important is being used– Is it a culture or PCR. It should be a PCR as it is 3 to 4 times more sensitive than culture. If it has been 12 weeks since the concerning encounter, you can redo the antibody test and if you are still not convinced if it is negative that you are uninfected, you can arrange to get the herpes Western blot.

Terri
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