[Question #625] Herpes/HIV Assessment

43 months ago

 -So 17 days ago I made a mistake and randomly hooked up with someone I had just met... We had protected vaginal sex that lasted all of 10 seconds because I really wasn't into it(she was on top). After that, I removed the condom and she rubbed my penis using her saliva as lubricant (never received oral).  We did kiss but this was also short lived, totaling 1 minute. The whole sexual encounter lasted maybe 5 mins in total.

-After 4-5 days I started feeling some minimal burning and tingling around my genitals in non-specified spots that I could only have attributed to catching something. I have no lesions, blisters , discharge, rash,odor, burning when urinating, swollen lymph nodes etc... that I can notice. Maybe some redness, but that's probably due to constant inspection. At about 12-13 days,I developed what I thought was a low grade fever, but chalked it up to the anxiety associated with the unknown right now. I'm already on medication for anxiety/depression,so I tend to think worse case scenario in almost every thing. This apparent low grade fever has continued up until today and I finally decided to buy a thermometer  to check 97.5, 97.8 on the two occasions I've felt feverish.  I've  also had some occasional chills, maybe 4-5 times over the past week that quickly dissipate.

- At this point,I'm trying to get peace of mind on what could potentially be going on and herpes and HIV immediately flagged when searching symptoms. Any thoughts?   My  biggest concern is the minimal burning/tingling on occasion and apparent low grade fever and chills I occasionally get. The thermometer check has somewhat put me at ease but I'm still concerned. I know it's to early for HIV and Herpes screening with no lesions blisters etc. Could this be mental or do I really have something to worry about here?

Thanks

Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
43 months ago
It was great that you used a condom for this interaction and probably also good that the encounter was relatively short in duration.  I do not feel that this encounter puts you at risk for HIV infection at all.  The saliva lubricant just isn't a way to transmit HIV infection.  The thermometer checking was also a good idea to show that you actually didn't have a fever just felt a bit warm to yourself.  .
I also don't believe that this incident puts you at risk for genital herpes either.  Let me ask you - have you ever in your lifetime had a cold sore on your lip or in your nose? 

Terri
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43 months ago

Terri,

Thanks for getting back to me so quick. To my knowledge I have not had any cold sores on my lips or nose. I had a complete diagnostic test in  November and everything came back negative to include HSV1 and HSV2. This interaction has been the first in sexual nature since then so I'm kicking myself if I did contract something in my 5mins lapse of judgment. I do occasionally get a small pimple like bump on the inside of the upper lip that's painless, but I assume the test rules out HSV1 or other infection unless contracting since then? I forgot to mention in my first post that she might have been playing with herself before rubbing my penis, would this change your opinion at all?

Your reassurance that I'm clear on both accounts does give me some peace of mind, but as I mentioned I do feel some discomfort in my groin area from time to time and occasionally feel flush(with no temperature). I read that feeling flush itself could be an indication of infection, has this ever been true of STIs in your experience ?I'm not really experiencing any other symptoms as I mentioned but I know in many cases symptoms are non-existent.  Could these symptoms be the cause of something else, possibly unrelated but extremely coincidental? If so what?

Ultimately, I know the only way to be certain is to complete testing again. Whens the earliest I could test to achieve correct results in your opinion. I've read various timeframes, but given the high amount of anxiety I'm experiencing given what's at stake, I would like to test ASAP.


Thanks

Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
43 months ago
Feeling flush is so subjective, wouldn't you agree?  You are feeling flush with a below average temp, right?  It's good that you have some baseline testing to compare to in the future. 
If you are going to test for herpes antibody again, I would do it at 12 weeks post exposure.  It is probably important for you to know that the traditional HSV 1 screening test misses 1 out of 4 infections, compared to the herpes western blot, the gold standard test. 
I'm not sure what might causing your symptoms, but I do think it is unlikely that it is herpes.

Terri
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43 months ago
So I got a 10 panel test done on Monday and all results came back negative...Which is good! The company I went through stated after 5 weeks there test are 97-99% effective. The testing itself was done at LabCorp so I know its legitimate, but the percentages seem high from what I've read on your site and others, specifically HIV(3rd Gen) and HSV (IGg) testing. I know the standard for 99% accuracy is to wait 12 weeks, but I wanted to rule out the other STDS as well and HIV and HSV were included in the panel. I know originally you thought I had nothing to worry about based on my exposure, and all my symptoms, I,e feeling like I have fever, some minor discomfort in the genital region etc.. has dissipated. 1) Based on this information, do you feel its necessary to get tested again at 12 weeks? 2)If the percentage isn't 97-99% after 5ish weeks, what's a more realistic figure? 3) I've read on this website in multiple post that even getting HIV/HSV is rare if not extremely rare given the nature of the interaction ~1%, is this correct? I'm just trying to put my mind at ease as this has been giving me a great deal of anxiety as I mentioned.

Thanks,
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
43 months ago
The literature doesn't support that the tests are that accurate that soon.   However, given your experience (and one must take all of that into account when evaluating the accuracy of antibody tests) I don't think you need to test again, no.  10 seconds of protected intercourse simply doesn't warrant that.  And I'm not an expert who easily says that!

Terri
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