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Herpes Prodrome - what is it like for you?

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Strange thing this prodrome, I'm actually just getting a handle on it. I always get tingling in the exact same spot my first outbreak started, 15 months ago. In the crease at the base of my penis, left side. It might last days, and every time I go to the bathroom of course I take a quick look to see if there's anything visible. Then suddenly (sometimes very suddenly) a few red spots might appear in a different spot. Two Saturdays ago I'd been tingling for about three days, took a shower before going out that night and I took a good look and no visible signs. Then 3-4 hours later I was in a bar having a few drinks and went to the bathroom, I was feeling something different so I looked down and there it was, red spots about 2-3 inches away on the top of my shaft. I couldn't believe it could appear that fast. Was it alcohol? Stress from that girl flirting with me? It sure freaked me out.


Three tiny blisters appeared, healed, and now ten days later they are almost invisible.........and what do you know, I'm tingling again! If it's still like this in the morning it means there's another one coming soon. Does anyone else get it like this? I had back-to-back outbreaks in May, I sure hope my gift isn't going to make a habit of this :(



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Yep was just like that for me with constant ob's for about 6 months, then just stopped and nothing much since. Just had one, no blisters but feeling decidedly different down there and the skin looking a bit irritated. Lasted two to three days and that was it.

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I'm a health nut. I eat perfectly clean, train with weights 5 days a week, and run 3-5 mornings a week. I'm 6'1", 230lbs, 11-12% bodyfat, so there really isn't much room for improvement in my lifestyle. I've just ordered 4 bottles of Lysine caps. I've used Valtrex for outbreaks over the past year, but 4/day for 10 days is 40 pills, I figure it's just as well to try 1/day and see how that works out! If I can avoid the outbreak in the first place I'm way ahead especially if it's only for the sake of a few extra pills......

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You are onto it, not anything else you can do...I agree on the medication, I would be taking it too if living healthy didn't work. I have been lucky as I am the same..weights, dancing, walking everyday and eating 80/20 raw food. I use organic coconut oil for cooking and as body moisturiser, take barley grass, vit C and garlic everyday. I also take Lysine and Olive leaf extract if I get an outbreak. There is a great herbal ointment I found here in NZ that works amazing on any irritated spots,heals blisters really fast and feels really soothing...it has Melissa, tea tree and peppermint oils in it - best stuff ever. Good luck with the Valtrex.

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Lelani, you're so knowledgable like in all of your other posts!




Bro I'm the same way, I'm 6'1 225 lbs. Anyway Lelani is right, keep a good nutrition and vitamin regimen. Since this virus has a lot to do with the immune system, and I'm sure you're familiar with GNC get the probiotic50 and lysine1000 they're both really good supplements and it will keep you from getting sick as well. Olive leaf works really well too! Typically I only use Valtrex when I get an outbreak like 2000g within 24 hours. Keep in mind foods high in lysine (milk, fish, eggs, poultry, beef) THANK GOD LOL usually keep the virus at bay. But carbs on the other hand, (rice, wheats, grains etc) are high in arginine in which the virus thrives. Keep that in mind and keep doing what you're doing. Oh and just keep that area dry, for some reason everyone's nether regions tend to produce a different type of sweat than that of the rest of your body, so use some baby powder or balla powder (its good I use it).


If you have any other questions, feel free to ask dude!

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Awh thanks college guy :-) You have some pretty good info yourself! hey I forgot to say...let go of angry and stressful thoughts and people who aren't good for you. Herpes has a way of making you deal with forgiveness and learning to be good to yourself..in every way. Thoughts are powerful things...

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I'm confused about outbreaks. I was diagnosed with HSV1 5 years ago. First outbreak was awful. Since then I had a minor irritation on one spot, but every time I looked, never saw a blister, just some redness, and had some soreness, no tingling. I was in a Masters program and life was fairly stressful though I tried to take care of myself as best as I could. I eat healthy and take Chinese herbs specifically for herpes. I only tried the pharmaceutical anti-virals once and they made me feel so awful I didn't want to do them again.


My question is were those red marks and soreness signs of an OB? My doctor thinks they were not, though my doc never inspected me during these times. However, just last week, I had for certain an OB. Full-on with blisters on the side of my vagina and buttocks, with total tingling, burning, etc... The feeling lasted almost a week, but 12 days later, I can still see red marks. ugh! So, how do you really know you are having an OB?


I have always thought it would be best to abstain from sexual activity when having an OB, but how do I know what's an OB or not? I have a crush on a new guy right now and I think he likes me too. I'd like to have a healthy, happy, safe sex life again some day.



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Well with me it's like I said, the tingling is pretty much always in the same spot. It's where my very first OB started. I guess it's along a big nerve or something. If you are tingling in a particular spot it's probably a "borderline outbreak". My wife gets them like that, she knows something is going on, sometimes she can see a couple of reddish spots under the skin, but they rarely come to the surface.......

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Did you have prodrome before your OB last week? If you did then you should have a handle on the prodrome feeling. I always assume the worst when I have it, but that sure must suck when you're single and the opportunity for sex arises during that time and you really want it. Anyways back to the topic, for example I had an OB a couple weeks ago, it was preceded by unmistakeable prodrome. After it passed, I had tingling again, and I thought for sure I would break out again, but didn't. However I would say I would have been contagious during those few days just the same.


Agree on the red marks after healing, it sucks. Pretty much unavoidable, the blisters come right up through the skin so those little patches of skin are actually missing and have to grow back in from the sides. It stays red for awhile, but Polysporin can make a big difference and speed up healing (once the sores have dried).

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I have to say I am not 100% sure if I am sometimes having prodrome symptoms as I sometimes have slight irritation, if you can call it that, slight itchiness and maybe a teeny bit of redness but no breakout. Over the last two weeks I have been experiencing that on and off, wondering if it is from overheating with dancing or prodrome symptoms. It doesn't last long and I would have to be tested to really know...good thing I am single and not having to deal with telling someone "I'm not sure but...."

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I never had prodrome symptoms with the red marks that I have gotten off and on for the past five years. It just felt sore in this one spot for 1-2 days, like I had rough sex or something, which unfortunately wasn't the case. :-)


Anyway, with the outbreak I had 13 days ago now, I definitely had prodrome symptoms. It burned, tingled and hurt just to walk down the street - same as the very time I had an outbreak. But this time it was in a different area on my body. I'm just kind of shocked that I got such an intense outbreak after 5 years of having these suspect minor outbreaks. I take it as a sign to take better care of myself.


I also suspect that strong sunlight is a trigger for me. The person that gave it to me says he used to get cold sores (on his lips though) whenever he went out in intense sunlight. That was his trigger. Anyone think the sun is a trigger for genital herpes?

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My prodrome is a tingly/itchy/slightly burning sensation only in the spot that my outbreaks normally show up. I've heard of other people's prodrome sensations being intense pain in the nerves of their thighs (very common), but I haven't experienced that myself.


Even though I have no way of knowing whether this is true or not, I suspect that whenever I feel that prodrome-type feeling, that is actually when the virus is shedding (viral shedding happens about 5-10% of the time and is just as contagious as an actual outbreak, even though there are no visible signs or symptoms). That happens more times than not: I get the prodrome feeling, but no outbreak follows. When I do feel that prodrome feeling, I do my damndest to take a handful (~800mg) of Acyclovir in anticipation of an outbreak. Sometimes I have an outbreak, sometimes I don't. Hard to say whether it's the Acyclovir, fate or my witchdoctor that dodges the actual outbreak ... And impossible to say without a double-blind study and two identical copies of me ... ;)


Also, to this day, I haven't been able to pin down any one or two definite things that make me have an outbreak, whether it's sunlight, stress, chocolate, coffee, rough sex (I'll be damned if I'll be cutting out all of that except for stress!) And it's also hard to come up with a definitive culprit that causes a herpes outbreak when I only get 1-2 outbreaks per year these days ...


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As time goes on your outbreaks will lessen. I have gotten to the point that I recognize my prodrome when I feel slight heat in the base of my spine. I can tell the next day or two the tingling will begin in my infected area with an outbreak a day later.


Now this only happens when I know I’m going to get some. ;) So I think the stress of an encounter is a subconscious way of reminding me that I have to be careful. It took me almost twenty years to find out that nuts are my trigger more than anything else.


You need to be vigilant, but not too anal about it. Just look for the warning signs and the trigger each time you have one approaching. I found the best remedy to an outbreak is to remember to breath and de-stress. Sometimes this is all it took for my outbreak to disappear.



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HaHa that's sounds like what happened to me a couple weeks ago! I wasn't actually going to "get some" but I was in a nightclub and the opportunity was there for the easy taking, and I certainly was tempted. I did have the prodrome in mind the whole time, then I started to feel something a little different later in the evening. I went to the bathroom to check it out and sure enough, three spots on a red area. Guess it wasn't just a coincidence! Thanks for sharing.....

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  • 2 weeks later...

I used to get herpes outbreaks all the time. I've had it for 2 years now I'd say. I haven't really had an outbreak since. When I know I'm going to see my boy I start taking valtrex about 2 to 3 days before and continue until I leave. That was when he was out of town. Now he lives back in the city with me so I try to take one everyday as preventive measures. We use a condom every time but I can see he's still worried. I'm scared I won't notice the prodrome and pass it on to him. I haven't had one in a while so its kind of like waiting for something to happen at the wrong time. I was wondering if anyone had any other tips for me. I've heard lysine has been known to sometimes increase outbreaks. I'll do anything to decrease his chances of catching it.

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  • 1 year later...

I've been taking 1000mg of Lysine per day and I can't say I've seen any real results either

way. If anything, I feel like I'm red and tingly all the time as I have HSV-1 orally and genitally. My face is almost always itchy and really oily. I wonder if the Lysine is the problem?? Just started taking olive leaf too. Part of me feels like it's all nonsense. If the virus wants to come out and play, it does.

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It could be that you are taking too much - best thing to do is go off it for 1 week - see what happens. If the symptoms stop, you know it's the Lysine. If not, they perhaps go back on a low dose just as support for your system.... then start looking for *your* other triggers.


I will tell you one thing - anger and stress WILL trigger you...especially if you are already in an unhealthy place in other ways.... if your diet or other mental issues are "eating" at you, anger/stress will flip your switch in a heartbeat.


Again though, I think you may have something else entirely going on. Get thee to a Dr about those other symptoms... and by the way, Psoriasis is autoimmune and will be sensitive to many of the same kind of things as Herpes ... esp stress and anger ;/

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I have has herpes for over 20 years, for the majority of those years, I either manged with suppression meds and has minimal outbreaks or took nothing and dealt with the handful of outbreaks I had a year. I have had two pregnancies that both resulted in c-sections, so no fear of transmission. My husband has always known about my situation and has been supportive and never contracted the virus.


Everything has changed in the last six months, I have had prodrome symptoms constantly, some resulting in an outbreaks other times nothing, but pain and tingling in my right thigh. For the last 2 months i have taken 1000mg of Valtrex daily, sometimes more. I had blood work done in November, after discussing missed periods and hot flashes with my ob/gyn. My test results indicated menopause.


Has anyone heard of a correlation between menopause and outbreaks? Thoughts on switching to another anti-viral. I am really bummed out and would love any feedback.



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I've had mine for 35 years. Menopause seems to have turned mine off. But I'm done now. Trying to remember my peri-menopausal times... I think I had some outbreaks but nothing different from usual.


Are you doing any bioidentical hormones? May be worthwhile to try them ...they are not nearly as harmful to the body as the older types and it may help your body adjust to the changes. Or if you want the natural route try Black Kohosh.... that settled my menopausal symptoms....and as I recall I had fewer OB's when I had that under control.

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