I'm sure your doc thinks he's doing the "right" thing by downplaying this all for you and trying to keep it "simple". Unfortunately what some doc's don't realize is that in this day and age - a few hours on the 'net and you know about the same about herpes as they do and you deserve more intelligent answers than you had crotch flu!! It's totally up to you if you want to switch doctor's - finding one you feel comfortable with isn't always easy. If you find that your current doctor is willing to be "taught" then stick with him - otherwise yes indeed you may find yourself looking for a new doc
He can contact asha for some terrific info as well as gsk will also send him some wonderful info for him and his patient's if he contacts them ( the drug company that makes valtrex and originally patented acyclovir ).
So what to do for now? It sounds like you have been reading the info on asha about herpes which is a terrific place to start!! I also recommend the patient counseling video and the herpes handbook at www.westoverheights.com
. Both are excellent resources also ( and free ). Type really does matter no matter what any medical professional tries to tell you. Chances are good that if your doctor won't order up a herpes blood test for you that he also isn't aware of the type specific herpes igg blood tests and will just order a non-type specific test that was a waste of time anyways
If you live in the US you can actually order up the test yourself and pay for it out of pocket. www.healthcheckusa.com
both offer the herpes select igg for hsv1 and hsv2 ( that's the test you want to order - don't waste your time and money on the igm - it's worthless in adults ). Either place will run you around $100 for the test. You can also look around locally to see if you can get it cheaper at a std clinic or planned parenthood or local health department. Be sure to wait at least 3 months after your last sexual encounter before getting the blood test though. some folks take that long to seroconvert for their infection to be picked up on on the test.
So why does type matter? Well when you have recurrences of either they are treated the exact same. What is different though is hsv1 genitally tends not to reocurr very often. Also hsv1 orally is very prevalant in adults so if your partner already has it orally - they are very, very unlikely to contract your genital infection. Only a small percentage of folks with hsv1 genitally really benefit from daily suppressive therapy since it doesn't shed very often and usually doesn't reoccur very often. Hsv2 genitally however does reoccur more often and also sheds more often. It's more likely to be transmitted to a partner so daily suppressive therapy might be the better choice for the infected partner if both partners aren't infected. So yes knowing your type and your partners type is important.