[Question #57] Mystery STD

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106 months ago
HI Dr. Handsfield,

I'm a 35 year old women about to be married in a few months and something is still haunting me from before I met my fiance.

I had a one-night stand in the the Fall of 2012 and we had intercourse about 3 times, unprotected and he did not ejaculate in me.  This was in the course of 12 hours or so. 

About 2 weeks later I had a small rash on my left buttock, spinal tingling and random shooting pains down my left leg.  These continued at random for a few months and lessened.  I still some random sensations since this time down my left leg, a lot of times before or during my period.  They are much less than they had been initially.  And I've never had any kind of skin rash since.

I was tested in the fall of 2013 for HSV 2, HIV, Syphalis,Gonorea, Hep B, Hep C and HPV - I was negative for all of these and my pap was normal too.  (I can't seem to find any chlamdia results from what I just looked at, but I assume they are OK).

This abnormal sensation hasn't gone away, and I've grown paranoid and been researching HTVL 1 and 2 or wondering if perhaps I got a CMV infection or some other herpes strain.  I am already a carrier of HSV 1 prior to this event. 

We are about to get married and start a family and my fiance doesnt know my concerns, but they are really bothering. I know I sound crazy, but I don't just 'feel bad' about a one night stand. I had had several before this and had no bad consequence, but this one left me with some kind of actual sensations and continued annoyance that I find really disturbing. 

My fiance and I have had unprotected sex for 1.5 years and he has not had any issues. 

Please let me know if I should get further testing or testing during pregnancy for HTVL 1 and 2 or if you rule those out even as a possiblity with my symptoms.  I'm just so worried now and want to let this go. 

Thank you!
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Edward W. Hook M.D.
106 months ago

Welcome to our Forum and congratulations on your forthcoming marriage.  I hope that my comments will be helpful to you.  I suspect that the symptoms that you describe are not related to HTLV or any other STI that you might have acquired from the one night stand you describe but that the temporal proximity of the rash with your potential exposures may have led you to wonder if the two are related.  This is not an uncommon sequence of events and can often be misleading. 

I applaud your having been tested for STIs over time, more because it is a great way to assure your own sexual health as well as that of your partner than because it was necessary as part of the evaluation of your rash and or subsequent abnormal sensations in your left leg.  Rashes occurring on the buttocks can have many causes, including on occasion HSV however with no subsequent recurrences and negative blood tests for HSV antibodies you can have great confidence that you did not acquire herpes from the exposures you describe.  The sensations that you describe in your leg could have many, many different causes (most often they represent a back or vertebral disc strain) and in the setting you describe further concern that they are due to the sexual exposure you describe are, for all practical purposes zero.  Unless you or your partner was from the Caribbean  HTLV infection is not a practical concern (and, even then HTLV infections are rare).  Further, if you have donated blood at any time since the exposure you describe, your blood was tested for HTLV infection at that time. 

I see not need for further testing of any sort related to the sensations you describe at this time. Should they progress you may want to seek evaluation by your doctor but even then, there is no reason form the information you have provided to suggest that they are related to the sexual encounter you describe.  I urge you not to worry further about this and to move forward to think about other things, like your wedding plans.  I hope my comments are helpful.  EWH