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No diagnosis yet but I have questions, please.


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Hello everyone. I’m a 49 year old male. I was recently in a very brief relationship with a woman who I’m no longer with. Prior to being physical with her I was tested for all common STDs with the exception of HSV. I asked her to do the same because I wanted to be responsible. 
 

Well, she got tested but one night things got a little too hot and we had unprotected sex prior to her results coming back. We had 5 episodes of unprotected sex as well as a few episodes of oral foreplay. 
 

When her results came back she was positive for HSV2 with a result of 1.22 IGg. The lab considers anything above a 1.09 to be positive. 
 

I’m freaking out of course. She claims that she’s never had any prior symptoms or knowledge of having herpes. However, her inability to tell the truth is one of the reasons I’m not with her anymore. It’s been about 10 days since our first sexual contact and about 3 days since our last sexual contact. 
 

I do have issues with anxiety and I know all to well that anxiety can create crazy symptoms and play mind games with feeling physical symptoms. However, the last 2 days I’ve experienced intermittent pain in my testicles that feels like a shooting / pulsing pain. The first time I noticed it it actually woke me up at 2am. 
 

I also have these 1-3 second long pinpoint sensations on my thighs and around my pubic mound. They are very brief and I’d describe them more as annoying than painful. 
 

I’ve read just about every CDC and DOH statistic report on HSV2 transmission and I see that transmission seems to be really low when someone isn’t in the middle of an outbreak. To the best of my knowledge, she didn’t have any ulcers but I realize they can be super tiny or even nonexistent and still transmit it to me. I’ve never had an STD in my life so I’m definitely freaking out. 
 

I know it’s a waiting game at this point but I’m hoping to get some insight from members here and would like their take on it. 
 

Anyone have a similar experience and NOT ended up positive?? 

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Hey there @KindaWorried,

I totally get how nerve-wracking this situation must feel for you, especially with anxiety throwing its weight around. It's super common to start feeling every little sensation in your body when you're worried about something like this.

First off, it's good you're looking into this and wanting to be responsible. HSV2 can indeed be transmitted even without visible symptoms, but you're right that the risk is significantly lower without an active outbreak (only a 4% chance per year for males even with no protection or daily suppressive therapy — read the free handouts for more). The IGg score you mentioned does indicate exposure, but it's also in that gray area where false positives can happen, especially with scores close to the cutoff.

The sensations you're describing could be a lot of things, anxiety included. Since it's only been a short time since your last contact, it might be too soon for typical HSV2 symptoms to show up if they're going to at all.

Many people find themselves in situations similar to yours and don't end up testing positive, so don’t worry yourself crazy (easier said than done, I get it). The waiting part is tough, but you're doing the right thing by paying attention and planning to get tested. FYI, IgG tests are notoriously not precise, so I’d consider the Western Blot, which is much more accurate. In the meantime, maybe focus on activities that help you relax and keep your mind off things.

If you need someone to talk to, reaching out here is a great step. And when the time comes, getting a test will give you the clarity you need. Hang in there, you got this!

Notes:

  • My mother is now in hospice with end-stage cancer, so I am at her house a lot these days helping where I can until she passes. Thank you in advance for understanding if I am not as quick to respond as I normally would be. This is a precious and bittersweet time …
  • This content 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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