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tiredandlonely last won the day on May 6

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  1. I started valtrex daily about 4-5 months after my initial diagnosis. I had sort of "prodrome" like symptoms for maybe 6-8 months after that, but never had another outbreak. I don't really get symptoms at all anymore. Sometimes around my period I get kind of itchy, but I'm not sure if that's herpes or just normal hormonal stuff going on. I continue to take daily suppressive meds because my husband is negative for herpes, so I'm not sure what it would be like for me if I was not taking the medication. Eventually, I will probably come off the meds and see what happens. I think daily suppressive therapy could be helpful, especially since you have limited windows when you get to see your partner. Keep in mind that you can still have breakthrough symptoms while on suppressive therapy (so don't be discouraged if you do), but hopefully your symptoms in general will be greatly reduced.
  2. You can't give your partner "more" herpes since he already has the virus Potentially having sex with symptoms could trigger an outbreak for him, or if could irritate you/make your outbreak worse, especially since it is a new infection. I'm not so sure - I did not remain with the person who gave me herpes (he was cheating on me) and I haven't had a partner who also had herpes since him. Also, if you are having this many outbreaks so close together, it may be worthwhile to ask your doctor about daily suppressive therapy with antivirals, at least for a little while, until the virus calms down a little bit. I have had herpes for five years and in the beginning it really sucked. In addition to feeling isolated, unlucky, and depressed, I thought everything was an outbreak. You will get used to it, and after a while, it is not such a big deal - I promise!
  3. This does not sound like a cold sore. If you get something like this again, you should go to the doctor and have it swabbed for your peace of mind.
  4. I don't think you're crazy. But I think that this virus (or the suspicion of the virus) can drive us crazy. Is there any inflammation or just the neurological symptoms? The reason I ask is because after my first outbreak I experienced a lot of pain, burning, tingling, etc. for months, but no blisters. I had inflammation (not sure if there is any inflammation). I was tested for yeast and bacteria and everything was negative. Eventually I went to a new doctor and she prescribed metronidazole and told me that not all bacteria shows up on those tests. I was better within a week. I had attributed all of my symptoms to herpes, but they were not herpes related. I'm not saying that your symptoms are not herpes related, but it may be worth asking for additional treatment or testing for other things.
  5. Maybe the antivirals helped you, maybe there was some placebo effect going on (the placebo effect is a real thing), or maybe you coincidentally had a reduction in symptoms during the time you were taking the antivirals. As you already know, to get a diagnosis without blisters, you need to wait until enough time has passed for you to have built up antibodies and get another blood test. You say that you have been looking inside your urethra and seeing a lot of inflammation for 2 months, but you are not in pain. Did you ever look inside your urethra before this? How do you know it did not always look this way, or that it at least did not look inflamed before your sexual encounter? I still think this could be caused by a number of things that are not herpes (bacteria, fungus, etc) that have not been ruled out. I have had yeast infections that were not painful but caused visible inflammation. If there is a lot of inflammation and no identifiable infection, it may be worth asking your doctor about trying a course of steroids. The downside of this is that if you do have herpes, steroids can cause a flare up (especially if you're not on antivirals). However this may not be all bad; if you have a flare up, you can get a swab and potentially get diagnosed. You an also get back on antivirals more quickly, which will hopefully lead to earlier long term comfort/easing of your symptoms if this is herpes. If you don't have a flare up, steroids should help the inflammation to go down and you will at least be more comfortable while you wait to get the blood test.
  6. STD tests do not typically test for herpes unless requested. Your husband could always check with his doctor about what was tested when he had his exam. Do you currently have symptoms that are kept under control by the valtrex?
  7. Good luck! I also just want to mention that at the end of the day, I hope it doesn't matter who acquired the infection from whom. It does suck to be in this situation, but you both clearly had no idea about any prior infection, so whoever had it first did not do this intentionally.
  8. More information is needed. How were you tested? Did you get tested at the time of your initial outbreak, or only one month later? What test did they use to diagnose your girlfriend? If you were tested by IgG and it was positive, then there is no way to know when infection occurred. My understanding is the only way to identify a recent infection is how it happened for me: I had an initial outbreak, and it was swabbed and positive for HSV-2. I had a blood test at the same time and it was negative for HSV-2 antibodies on IgG. About a month to 6 weeks later (don't remember exact dates), I had another blood test and it was positive for IgG. If she had IgM testing, hopefully it was done in combination with IgG testing because IgM is not reliable. It she had IgG testing and was negative, then she needs to get retested when it is 12 weeks after her last exposure (in this amount of time most people will develop antibodies). If the IgG is positive at that time, then it will confirm that she recently acquired the infection. But if she has not had a negative IgG test, then you do not have a baseline.
  9. For episodic therapy, the CDC recommends 500 mg valtrex 2x daily for 3 days OR 1g (so two pills at the same time in your case) once daily for 5 days. If it were me, I think I would choose to take the 500 mg 2x daily for 3 days.
  10. If you already have cold sores, you already have antibodies to HSV-1. It is uncommon for people who already have cold sores to get HSV-1 genitally (see here for more info: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/herpes-simplex-virus). Female to male transmission rate is about 4% when no condom and no antivirals are used (and when the male does not have HSV-1 antibodies). You can download an ebook and handouts through this link (this is from the Herpes Opportunity website) that provides helpful information on transmission statistics: https://herpeslife.com/free-ebook?sc=blog
  11. IgM is not an accurate test, so you have not been diagnosed with herpes. I think you should get IgG testing for peace of mind. Did the girl you had sex with also have a fulls STD panel? You say she did not show you her results. Did you show her yours (so that there would be an expectation of reciprocity)? Do you have a reason to think she would lie to you about her herpes status? If you have HSV-1 orally (like many, many, many people who never have symptoms), it is not related to your brief unprotected sexual encounter, and I do not think you need to be worried about spreading it to your niece, mostly because hugging her or playing with her is not going to transmit herpes to her. Most people get it when there is an active cold sore lesion and it does not sound like you have experienced that. In any event, it is not a sexual disease, so hopefully it will be easier to talk about in the even that you do have an oral infection. Keep in mind that many, many people are seropositive for HSV-1 and never have symptoms. According to a paper I found 33% of adults in India test positive for HSV-1. That is 1 in 3 people. You are interacting with others who carry this every day. It sounds like you only got tested because you did not use a condom for a short period of time (keep in mind that condoms do not offer 100% protection against herpes since it is transferred from skin to skin contact and not bodily fluids). If you had used condoms the entire time you were having sex, you wouldn't have gotten tested, and you wouldn't be worrying about oral HSV-1. So I do not think there is anything productive that will come out of worrying about it now. There is much more we can discuss if you end up being positive for herpes on IgG (or Western Blot, but not sure it is available there). Please keep us posted.
  12. I don't know of the link between weaning off your antidepressants and having an outbreak. I am not aware of a link, but I know antidepressants can impact the immune system, so it is possible that it triggered something. However, I don't think an IgG blood test being positive for HSV-1 means that you necessarily have it genitally. Many people are seropositive for HSV-1 from childhood (even if you never got cold sores). I think the best way to know in your case is to have a positive culture from a sore in the area. When you had a genital swab, was there a blister or sore? If not, do you know what it was about the irritation that made your GYN think it was herpes? You might consider stopping valtrex for a little while, to see if any sores develop so that you can get a confirmatory diagnosis. If they do, you can get them swabbed. However, my understanding is that gHSV-1 doesn't recur as frequently as HSV-2, so it's possible that even without valtrex, you might not have another outbreak (if that's what it was) for a long time (or ever). The virus can still shed though. Have you discussed your diagnosis with your husband (not sure how much he's aware of)?
  13. The first guy I disclosed to (mentioned earlier) was really great about my disclosure and herpes did not affect our relationship. But he wasn't a "wonderful guy" - he ended up being a jerk, like many of the jerks I had dated before. The point of my earlier post was that you do not need to be afraid of this virus. People will still accept you. And it is still possible to find love. It's not easy, but it wasn't easy before herpes. I agree with 100918. You have to work on yourself, really love yourself, and figure out what you want from a relationship and from life in general. Also, I was very scared of winding up alone, too. But then I decided that ending up single (if that's what happened) does not mean I'm ending up alone. I have a great family, great friends, and pets that bring me so much joy. I have hobbies that I enjoy and a career that I find fulfilling and rewarding. These are the things that are important to me, and when I started focusing on the things I loved and cultivating a life that I could be happy with, regardless of whether I shared it with one significant person or with my many friends and family, I realized how much I had to offer. And after I did all this work, my first attempt at letting someone in failed, because it's not a perfect system and guys can be really sweet and wonderful in the beginning and then turn into jerks when they lose interest/stop caring. I thought that because he accepted me with herpes he was this amazing person, but he was still just a guy who wanted a fling. It hurt so much, I really didn't want to put myself out there again, so I do understand the feeling of defeat and hopelessness. Dating is so hard, emotionally draining, and often times doesn't seem worth it. I think that focusing on yourself and what you need/want in life is important. But I also think putting yourself out there and dating is a good thing if it's what you want to do. If you do date, try to forget about herpes in the beginning. Make up your mind that you're not going to sleep with anyone for a month, 6 weeks, etc. and then just put the herpes discussion out of your mind. Be yourself and get to know people and let them see the real you. If you start to get close to someone and feel that you really like and trust them, then you start to think about disclosing.
  14. Why did you take acyclovir for 7 days? What dose did you take? The dose/regimen for acyclovir for a primary herpes outbreak is usually 400 mg 3x/day for 10 days. Since your symptoms have returned, have you gone back to the doctor? Have you had any cultures done? And skin scrapings? Any other non-herpes related blood work? It could be irritation. It could be a bacterial or fungal infection. You say this does not "add up". Add up to what? What you are experiencing does not necessarily add up to herpes. There are lots of things that can go wrong down there. After I was diagnosed with herpes I had pain, tingling, inflammation, burning, etc. for MONTHS with no blisters. I was swabbed and tested for yeast and bacteria and even had a biopsy and nothing came back positive. I finally saw a different doctor (she is still my doctor now) and she suggested a trial of metronidazole gel (antibacterial/anti-fungal) and I was fixed within a week. My new doctor said it was probably some strain of bacteria that didn't show up on a test. But I was convinced for months that it was herpes causing my symptoms because of things I read on the internet. The point is there are LOTS of things that can cause discomfort in that area. A good doctor will help you find a solution to your symptoms. It doesn't sound like you have been to a good doctor yet. I hope you find someone who can really help you. Also, go get an IgG test. 7 days of acyclovir shouldn't affect seroconversion. I said in an earlier post that if it is negative you will have to get tested again after 12-16 weeks, but if it's positive, you'll know and you can go back on antivirals and get your symptoms under control.
  15. I think it is a bit of a reach to say she has herpes because she is schizophrenic. I have read that there are links, but not everyone who is schizophrenic has herpes. I think the mono is unrelated. I also acknowledge that it's totally possible that she (or anyone) has HSV-2 and does not have symptoms. This is very common. The only way to know if she has herpes is for her to get tested. You can ask her to do this for you, but based on what you have written, it sounds like she is unwilling to do this. Also, keep in mind that even if she has HSV-2, it does not mean that you caught it from her. If she didn't have an outbreak and if you used condoms (not sure if you did?), your risk of transmission would still be quite low. I think you should focus on taking care of yourself and finding a doctor who can help you reach a diagnosis. I am not convinced that you have herpes, but I am so sorry that you are suffering.
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