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Just diagnosed with genital HSV2 and looking for guidance

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I was just diagnosed with genital HSV2 and I am definitely shocked. I know it only takes 1 time of unprotected sex to potentially contract it, but given the fact that there's only a 10% chance of getting it and I only had sex with this person twice is shocking. He said he has never had symptoms and didn't know he had it, although II'm skeptical as his responses were very casual. I guess it doesn't matter since I can't change the fact that I have it. 

I'm now paranoid that I will spread it to other parts of my body. Is this possible? If so, can it be spread anywhere on the body or just the mouth and eyes? I often look in a magnifyig mirror to see if anything is there and wash my hands afterwards, but my tiny bump or two is mostly on the bikini line so I'm nervous I may accidentally touch it and spread it. 

I'm not planning on being intimate with anyone soon, but when I do, how long after an "outbreak" is it safe to have sex? Do you have to wait until the bump is completely gone? I dont really get sores. More like a small red bump. 

I would love an H opportunity buddy to connect with! It would be great to talk about this with other people that have or is going through the same thing who can offer guidance. Hopefully I can do the same for them!

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Hey there @JJlove,

(By the way, I've seen you supporting others here. Thank you for giving back already! That is a huge part of healing: helping others going through the same thing!)

First off, I'm genuinely sorry you're going through this shock, but remember, you're not alone and there's a huge community here to back you up and share experiences.

Let's tackle the auto-inoculation fear: the idea of spreading the virus to another part of your body can be unsettling, but in reality, the chances are pretty low, especially if you're aware and cautious. Here's the lowdown: auto-inoculation usually happens when you touch an active outbreak and then touch another part of your body where the skin is thin or there's a cut, making it an easy gateway for the virus. Thick parts of our skin that aren't mucous membranes are pretty tough barriers for the virus to break through. You've got the handwashing down – that's your number one defense. So, just keep washing your hands after you touch an outbreak, and you're golden. And here's some good news: Over time, your body generally builds up enough antibodies to defend against auto-inoculation. Your immune system will step up to bat for you.

Now, onto the intimacy question: while it's often advised that once the scab falls off, it's generally okay to resume sexual activity, I personally take the extra cautious route. Just to be super sure and put my wife's safety first, I wait an additional week after the last visible symptom clears up. Everyone's comfort level is different, so it's all about what makes you and your partner feel safe.

On the H Buddy front, throw a comment up here and search for other people wanting to connect and PM: 

Sending you strength and positive vibes!

P.S. It's always a good practice to check in with a medical professional on these concerns. Forums are great for shared experiences, but professional guidance is key.

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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Thank you @mr_hopp! The complicated part about my outbreaks thus far is they don't present as a standard sore. It shows up as a very tiny red bump that looks almost like razor burn or ingrown hair and doesn't turn into a sore. While I'm fortunate to not get bad outbreaks, the bump takes awhile to go away and sticks around for like two weeks, even if I take valtrex to help speed up the recovery process. Since it doesn't typically scab or even if it does it is so so tiny, nothing falls off. I've attached a photo for reference. 

I had bloodwork done 6 weeks after exposure which was negative but my culture came back positive. I'm going back to get bloodwork again in a month, but I assume I am definitely positive if the culture came back positive, right? My worry is that I have fibromyalgia and my worst symptom when I have a fibro flare up is chronic fatigue. I have consistently been feeling more tired than usual since contracting HSV2 and I'm worried that will always be the case now that this virus is active and stressing out my immune system. Any thoughts or experience of others who are dealing with other health issues and how HSV2 affected them? 


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Hey @JJlove!

About those atypical outbreaks: HSV is honestly a chameleon. Although it mostly presents as a fluid-filled sore, it can in various ways for different folks. The tiny red bump you described can be an HSV symptom for some. The key is to recognize your body's own pattern and, over time, you'll become a pro at navigating it. 

The culture test being positive is a pretty definitive sign of an active HSV infection. Blood tests can sometimes take a while to show antibodies, so a negative result shortly after exposure isn't uncommon. But if the culture came back positive, it does indicate an active HSV infection.

Your concerns about fibromyalgia and the potential interaction with HSV2 are valid. There have been reports of individuals with other health issues, like fibromyalgia, experiencing more pronounced symptoms or fatigue when dealing with an HSV outbreak. The body can sometimes see a tug-of-war when managing two conditions. It's important to ensure you're taking good care of your overall health - balanced diet, rest, managing stress, and staying hydrated, all the stuff you already know, of course. De-stressing and taking care of yourself as much as you're able can help mitigate the intensity of flare-ups from either condition. 

Lastly, do remember that your body, like all of ours, is an incredible machine. It's adaptive and resilient. It'll learn to handle HSV2 in its own way. And while the initial stages can be overwhelming and riddled with concerns, over time, you'll find your rhythm and learn how to best care for your unique health landscape.

Stay strong!

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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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Thank you @mr_hopp! Very insightful. Only other question is if my body might start to better adjust once I start making antibodies to the virus? Since my blood test came back negative, it indicates I haven’t created the antibodies yet and I’m wondering if I’ve been consistently fatigued since contracting it because my immune system hasn’t built a response to it yet. I’m hoping that once I create antibodies, I won’t feel as tired and I won’t consistently get the prodrome symptoms which seem to be there all of the time, indicating the virus has been active non-stop. 

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Hey again @JJlove,

That's a very astute line of thinking! You're right on: Your body is currently in the midst of figuring out how to handle this new invader, and it's no small task for the immune system. It's like your body's defense force is mobilizing for the first time against this particular virus, and that can take a toll on your energy levels.

The absence of detectable antibodies early on is expected because it can take several weeks to a few months for your body to produce antibodies in response to the virus, which will then be identifiable through a blood test. This period is often called seroconversion.

Once your immune system ramps up and starts producing these antibodies, they'll help in controlling the virus's activity, which might lessen the frequency and severity of outbreaks and the associated prodrome symptoms you're experiencing. Many people report an improvement in their general well-being after this initial phase passes, as their bodies become more adept at managing the virus.

It’s also plausible that the continuous feeling of prodrome symptoms could be your immune system in a heightened state of alert. Once it learns to recognize and fight HSV2 more efficiently, there's a possibility that these constant prodrome sensations will decrease.

Just remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint. Giving your body time to adjust, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and staying connected with your healthcare provider are all important parts of managing HSV and fibromyalgia. Each step forward, even the tiny ones, are progress.

Hang in there and keep track of how you're feeling. It's a great way to notice improvements over time and to discuss them with your doctor. And as always, we're here for you.

Sending you positive energy and wishing you resilience on this journey!

  • Thanks 1

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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