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Frequent herpes-related vaginal infections

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I got diagnosed with HSV 2 five years ago and ever since then I get constant- and I mean constant- vaginal infections such as yeast infections, BSV, and UTIs. Since this didn’t occur before my HSV diagnosis I’m convinced that having herpes has made me more susceptible to other kinds of vaginal infections. My doctor is at a loss for what to do for prevention. I take probiotics, I pee after sex, I wash every day with water and use an antimicrobial wound cleanser sometimes that isn’t disruptive to pH balance. My husband and I are very frustrated by these frequent other infections. I typically order online meds to treat whatever I think it is because I don’t want to go to the doctor every month/ few weeks. Sometimes I go in for expensive testing and sometimes yeast or UTI is present, sometimes I’ve already treated it and everything is negative but residual symptoms like burning are still resolving. I’m absolutely miserable and worried about aging with this crap since as I get older my immune system won’t be as great and I will be prone to infections even more. I worry about being in the hospital later in age and doctors won’t order my valtrex- I take 1gm daily- and I will be suffering and nobody will understand or care. I’ve seen my coworkers in healthcare act disgusted by this diagnosis when away from the patient. I just want a cure. I want to be free from this. I feel helpless. Does anyone have a regimen to prevent all this suffering? I’m currently having an outbreak after an illness and I’ve been feeling horrible for 2 weeks now. Thanks for listening. 

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Hey there @Milkofamnesia, (great screen name, by the way!)

I can totally feel your frustration, and I appreciate you reaching out to share! Dealing with recurrent infections on top of managing herpes can definitely feel like a never-ending cycle of frustration and discomfort. It's great that you're already taking proactive steps to manage your vaginal health with probiotics, proper hygiene practices, and even seeking treatment. It sounds like you've been thorough!

It's important to know that herpes, like any virus, can influence your body's overall immune response, which might in turn affect your susceptibility to other infections. PSA: Although I don't have a vagina, my wife does. And she has had similar issues, and she doesn't even have herpes, so it's hard to pinpoint what's what when there are so many inputs to consider. 

If your current doctor is struggling to provide effective prevention strategies, seeking a consultation with a specialist might be a good idea. Infectious disease specialists or gynecologists who have experience with herpes and related infections might offer fresh insights. Terri Warren is a great medical-related resource.

It's unfortunate that some people in healthcare might still harbor stigma around herpes. Remember that you're not alone in this journey, and there are many understanding healthcare professionals out there who can provide the care you need without judgment. If you get any ounce of judgment, move on. There are plenty of great, understanding folks out there to choose from.

Strengthening your immune system can potentially reduce the frequency of outbreaks and other infections. A balanced diet, regular exercise, adequate sleep, and managing stress can all contribute to overall immune health. They're all the basics that we already know, but they're your first line of defense to give your body the support it needs to help keep you healthy.

Remember, you're doing your best to manage your health, and it's okay to ask for help when needed. Keep advocating for yourself, and don't hesitate to explore different avenues of care until you find the solution that brings you relief. You're stronger than you think, and your determination to seek answers speaks volumes about your resilience. Hang in there!

Note: This is for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute medical advice or diagnosis.
I'm not a medical professional, so please take this as friendly peer support. 

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