[Question #7550] Testing Results

2 months ago
I’ve recently tested on 12-31 positive for HSV-1 through bloodwork IGG antibody. (56 index level) No known symptoms of this to date. (I’ve had felt tingling in lip for 4-5 seconds here or there is that a possible symptom) I have tested negative for HSV-1 five years ago. I tested positive for covid in December and have kissed/dated someone who tested positive for mono/epv in early November. Is there any known cross reactivity to where either of these viruses could cause HSV1 to be positive?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
2 months ago
Absolutely not.  The IgG test for HSV 1 is simply not very good - it misses 30% of HSV 1 infections so it is possible that the first test missed your infection and second picked it up.  You have a very robust immune response to HSV 1 so there is no doubt that you are infected.  Have you ever had a cold sore on your lip or in your nose?  If yes, then that's why your HSV 1 positive.  If not, then we cannot know if your infection is oral or genital.  You should observe carefully for any lesions orally or genitally and if you see any, have them swab tested right away to help you identify what a herpes infection in you looks like.  About half the population in the US is infected with HSV 1 so this is certainly a very common virus.  Please let me know what other questions you may have, OK?

Terri
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2 months ago
Got it thank you. No, I’ve never had any symptoms. I’ve had tingling in my lips/mouth without any cold sore, could that be a sign,  like the beginning of one but never get a cold sore? 

The other question is hypothetical. I’ve seen things about asymptomatic shedding and reduction of that through antivirals. I’ve seen that soap can cut through the lipids of the virus rendering it ‘dead’. (Not sure if that’s right terminology) Say for instance if you have oral and you brush your teeth/wash your face, in theory, could that cut your viral load in that area reducing transmission risk even further? Or if it’s you have genital if you shower could that decrease viral load for a short time frame reducing transmission risk? Similar to washing your hands, to remove bacteria and viruses.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
2 months ago
That could be a sign, really not possible to know for sure short of getting the lip swab tested for herpes.
well, that might reduce shedding at the moment, or remove shed virus, but it wouldn't be long lasting unless you have very very fast intercourse or are a very quick kisser!

Terri
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2 months ago
Lol sounds easy enough... one last question since you mentioned a cold sore in the nose. Could it be in the nose to where you can’t necessarily see? I doubt you can say much without a swab to confirm but I have had irritation/pain and it’s bled when touched in my nose when I have been sick. Are those symptoms that  could be cold sores in the nose?  Or is there something specific? Also, to piggyback that, I’ve had those symptoms in December during covid, I chalked it up to dry irritated nose but if it was a cold sore and an active, recurrent outbreak, in theory, could that warrant the high antibody immune response? 
2 months ago
Sorry, wanted to add to last and I’m done. If i have gotten cold sores in my nose. Is it less likely to spread to others if the ‘outbreak’ location is in your nose vs lips? 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
2 months ago
People who get herpes outbreaks in their nose do feel something, even when they can't see it.  It feels tender and irritated and might bleed a little.  Tenderness in the nose with a cold might be a very different thing, so hard to know without a swab test.  But if you get it again, you might request a swab test to try to figure out where you are infected. 
If these are cold sores in your nose, you will also shed the virus from the oral area as well, at least some of the time. 
I've gotten cold sores in my nose but mine are just inside the nares so I could see the little water blisters forming.   Look carefully next time and see if you can see anything or better yet, have it swab tested to be clearer 

Terri
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