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False Positive in Herpes Test?

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I had a low # for my HSV 2 and after doing my own research found out that there's a 50% chance of it being a false positive. I contacted Westover Heights and they agreed that I need more testing to confirm. They suggested the Western Blot, but my state does not allow blood to be mailed out of state for testing and they can't mail the kit to me. They suggested I go to a neighboring state for the test and they will help me set it up. I've heard from others on different sites that this is not as easy as it sounds because you need to find a lab willing to do it. WH said they will work with Quest and there should be no problem.


Has anyone had a low score on the blood tests and gone for the Western Blot to confirm diagnosis? How did it work for you as far as the procedure goes- easy or not?


My partner and I discussed this and he has gone for testing too. We decided that we would wait to see his results. If he gets a low score too, we will both go for the Blot. Neither one of us has any symptoms. Mine was found in a reoutine testing for STD's because I never had these tests before and my OBGYN recommended it. All other tests were negative, but I do have HSV 1.


His Dr really didn't think it was necessary for him to be tested. My Dr just said at some point in my life I was exposed to the herpes virus and I can pass it on. She said nothing about my low score and a Blot test for confirmation. I hear most Drs don't know that the low score can mean 50% chance of false positive. I plan on calling her to let her know what I've found out. I do realize that while there's a 50% chance of a false positive there is also a 50% chance of false negative. Maybe I do have the virus. One way or another, I'd like to know for sure.


Any info is greatly appreciated.

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Hello and Welcome!


Yes - if your numbers are between 1.1 and 3.5 there's a 40% chance of a false positive. Sadly most PCPs and GP's are totally unaware of that and have no clue about the Western Blot option.


We've had a number of people on here who have done the Western Blot option. From what I have gathered it's pretty straight forward. Too bad your state is such a PITA about shipping blood.... :(


Tell your Dr to look up the work of Dr Peter Leone, who says this: (I would drop this into a word document for your Dr ;) )


One of the most common brands of type-specific serology is the HerpesSelect brand. It is a very good test, but there are issues with false positive results with one form called the HerpesSelect ELISA. (Other forms are the HerpesSelect Immunoblot and the HerpesSelect Express.) That is, some people who have a positive test result for the virus are not actually infected.


The Herpes Select ELISA is reported back as an index value. A value greater than 1.1 is considered positive. If you have no history of genital herpes outbreaks, did not have a positive culture or PCR test for HSV, or have no risk factors for genital herpes, you should know the index value. False positives have been reported with values less than 3.5. If your value is less than 3.5, ask to be tested again with a different test, preferably with another antibody test called the Western blot.

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The only other one worth trying is the Immunoblot from Focus Diagnostics ... that one tests for 2 of the proteins (the Elissa only tests for one ... Western Blot tests for 14). WB is the gold standard tho so if you can get that one, I'd go for it.


Yes... 2.8 is the score for the test.... definitely could be a False Positive.


I saw on another post that you are 67. Just so you know, STD's are actually rampant in some Senior Living areas because Seniors don' think to get tested AND a lot of the older guys, once they are single (for any reason) have a ton of women who are chasing them and some of them have their second boyhood when they realize that :p I know that the Villages in Florida became well known in the news many years back because they had the highest rate of new STD's in the state at the time :/ So you are NOT alone with your diagnosis even in your age group ;)

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Yes, I too read about Florida. I was married for over 30 years and never had a problem of any kind. Of course when I was younger I did have several relationships, so anything's a possibility. After my husband passed away I 've been in a relationship with only 1 man for over a year. He had been married for 30 years and was a virgin at his marriage. After his divorce he was in a long term relationship and then 4 short ones, so it's possible that he has the virus too. He also has no signs. But he did get tested after I got my results and we're waiting for his results. If he has a low number, we're going to another state to get the blot test, as ours doesn't allow it. Westover will arrange it for us.


My OBGYN said, we've been together for over a year and he is sure to have it too. She also said men never want to get tested, but that wasn't the case when I told him. I asked him to get tested and he did. My OBGYN also said if he's positive too, we will never know who gave it to whom or if we gave it to each other; maybe we both had it before we met- IF indeed we are positive. She also said if I've never had a break out, chances are I never will. Westover said I need more testing and I agree. They liked our decision to wait for his test, so we can go together if he also has a low score- sort of a bonding thing.


He's been very supportive- surprised when I told him, but said it makes no difference to him. He loves me and is staying. That's what I worry about most. Also, if I have it and he doesn't I worry about putting him at risk. He said we'll take precautions and he's OK with it. I fear the sex won't be the same; especially the oral sex. Waiting is the worst part of all this, especially when I'm still trying to get over this shock. I've had a rough few years and have been under a lot of stress- losing my husband a few years ago, breast cancer in January of this year and now this. Don't know how much more I can take. I'd like to find a counselor who specializes in this, but Westover said it's unlikely that I will. So far I've found no one, but still making calls.

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