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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 1:59 pm 

Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 1:10 pm
Posts: 4
I just found out yesterday that I have HSV-1. I have read so much in the last week, but still have lots of questions I can't seem to find answers to.

I recently started dating someone new. 3 days after we had sex, 2 tiny but painful bumps appeared. I went to the dr and had a swab culture done. The results came back + for HSV-1.
I have not talked to my BF about this yet. Fortunately he's been out of town since all of this happened. I am preparing to tell him when he gets back in a few days, but I need some answers.

I have gotten cold sores since childhood (maybe once a yr) but had never experienced anything genital. Is there any reason to have a blood test since I already had the virus in my body?
I have always been very careful about washing my hands when I've had a cold sore. And I can't even remember the last time I had one, prob last yr. What are the odds I gave this to myself by auto-inoculation?

The nurse asked if I had ever received oral sex from someone w/a cold sore. I haven't to my knowledge. Is HSV-1 most commonly transmitted thru oral sex? How common is genital/genital transmission for HSV-1?

When I went in for the test, the NP said my symptoms were "very very mild" compared to what she usually sees. Could this mean I have had it genitally for a long time as well and have just never realized it?

The sores have healed and don't hurt anymore, but I can still feel a bump under the skin. Does this mean I am still contagious? I asked about taking medication, but they said if it had healed there was no reason to take it now.
Do people take daily therapy for HSV-1? Is there any reason to take it daily if you don't have frequent outbreaks?

Once you've been through an outbreak and it has healed, should you wait a period of time after it has completely healed before having sex?

Considering the timing of this outbreak, and if my boyfriend does not have it already, was he more at risk for being exposed to the virus? We used condoms but did have oral sex.
If he does not have any symptoms, can he go and get a blood test now and find out or does he need to wait the 12-16 weeks?
I asked about this when I got the results, and the answer I got was "if he isn't having symptoms, he prob. doesn't need to be tested".

Thanks everyone.


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 3:07 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 5443
Location: PA
It's not common to contract hsv1 genitally with a well established oral hsv1 infection but it does happen now and then. Are you sure you get cold sores or are they inside your mouth and more likely to be canker sores?

Most folks with hsv1 genitally do not need daily suppressive therapy. Hsv1 genitally sheds infrequently and on average doesn't reoccur. ~50% of folks with hsv1 genitally never get another ob. of those who do - the average is 1 additional ob the first year and then 1 ob every other year. Only a small percentage of folks get ob's more often than that. If your partner has hsv1 orally then he's not likely to contract hsv1 genitally either ( I'm sure you are not believing that at this moment though since you got it eh? but really your situation isn't all that common ). Your partner will need a type specific herpes igg blood test to see what his status is too. Assuming he doesn't have hsv1 because he didn't have a cold sore at the time isn't accurate - only 20-40% of the folks who have hsv1 orally get obvious cold sores to know they are infected. He's more likely to have it orally than genitally. and no you didn't transmit the virus to your own genital area from your oral area.

You should wait until your genital skin is back to normal before resuming sex.

betsy


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 3:34 pm 

Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 1:10 pm
Posts: 4
Thanks so much Betsy for your reply. I definitely get cold sores, not canker sores and know the difference btwn them.

To be clear, my BF can go ahead and get the blood test without having symptoms? If you don't have symptoms, are there enough antibodies present to give a definitive result?

I know there is no way to know for certain, but considering the timing, is it most likely I got this from him? I wondered if it happening so soon after might mean I had this prior to our having sex.
I guess if he's negative, that will answer my question but I have had 3 partners in the last 6 yrs and this is the first time anything like this has happened.

When you wrote "wait until genital skin is back to normal"-does that mean that all traces are gone? For example, now the skin is totally healed and there is no pain but I can still feel a slight bump in the area. Do I need to wait until the bump is gone completely? I am in no hurry to have sex, just want to know for future reference.

Thanks again.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 12:43 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 5443
Location: PA
yes he can get a type specific herpes igg blood test even if he doesn't have any symptoms present. There is more info on testing on the asha herpes site to refer to.

If the skin on top appears normal then you can resume sex when you are both ready.

Feel free to ask any other questions that you think of :)

betsy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 9:21 pm 

Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 1:10 pm
Posts: 4
Thanks again Betsy! I really appreciate your help.
I did realize something that I had forgotten about until now. Before I experienced any symptoms, something strange happened to my nose. On the outside of my nose, btwn the nostrils was really sore, as if I had scraped it. It was fine when I went to bed and in the morning it actually woke me up bc it was stinging. Since it happened overnight, I thought I must've scratched it in my sleep or something.
But it wasn't a scratch and it wasn't a sore either, just the entire area was really raw skin. Maybe I am grasping at straws but could this be in any way related to the HSV1? I have had cold sores but never anything near or on my nose.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 8:07 am 

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 5443
Location: PA
It could've been your hsv1 infection flaring up differently than usual. It naturally can cause symptoms anywhere between the chin and up into the nose. Could be your body was run down and it triggered your hsv1 oral infection to act up too and could be what made you vulnerable to either contracting it genitally or if by chance you had it genitally previously and never knew it - caused this flare up genitally too.

As if you didn't have enough going on eh?

betsy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 12:18 pm 

Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 1:10 pm
Posts: 4
No kidding, now I am even more confused. The nose thing happened after the sex (one day later) but before the other symptoms.
If it was in fact caused by HSV1, I did not make the connection, so now I am wondering if it is more possible I have given this to myself?!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 12:40 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 5443
Location: PA
no you didn't give it to yourself. It's more likely that the new genital infection lowered your body's defenses and allowed your previous hsv1 oral infection to flare up ( if indeed that was hsv1 and not something else ).

betsy


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