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Boy have I discovered a lot about HSV in the last two days!


Newly diagnosed HSV-2 after outbreak. I'm late 40's and single mother of one. Not been in a relationship since Feb this year so very unexpected and upsetting. Yesterday I thought my life was over! Today I'm feeling a little more positive although this is still terribly upsetting and I'm still feeling like I'll be alone forever.


I'm in Australia so tests etc. may differ but I was really shocked to find out all of my sex health checks did not include one of the most common STI's, and I was never informed of this so that I could take precautions. I think this is what upsets me the most. There's clearly a serious lack of education and information. I thought having sex health checks prior to being intimate was a good way to approach things. I dislike condoms - they irritate my fragile skin among other things.


I have a few questions. As my outbreak is on my pubic bone, how is using a condom going to protect a future partner given a condom doesn't cover everything - or do I now have to resort to covering my entire genital area?


Also, I listened to a talk by Terri Warren and she said she doesn't recommend anything topical. My Dr gave me a topical pain killer. I thought using something that would dry the blisters would be good, but wondering why topical is not good? Does anyone know?


Last question is do I inform my ex's and if so how far back do I go? The only one I'm particularly concerned about is my last partner. Part of me wants to tell him so that he can protect future partners and get checked but part of me is worried he'll tell others about me! Is that selfish? We have no tests here as far as I've found out that are effective in detecting HSV anyway, which is why our sex health checks don't do them! So what can I tell him, I can't tell him get tested!?


Anyway thanks for listening. This feels very lonely.

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See if you can get on anti viral daily as a suppressive (if you can't use condoms). It Will help lessen the outbreaks. However, if you've just had one outbreak, your Dr may only prescribe anti viral fifor r outbreaks only. Sometimes you have to tell them you are having outbreaks frequently so they will prescribe long term.

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Hi, @OverTheRainbow. Asymptomatic shedding can happen from anywhere in the genitals, not just where you tend to have your outbreaks. So a condom can still help in case the virus happens to travel down nerve pathways and exit the body around the vagina, but condoms don’t ever prevent transmission completely.


From what I’ve read, I don’t think Warren is against topical applications, she just may not mention them too often. If you’re having a painful outbreak and the topical pain reliever is helping, go for it! I don’t get severe outbreaks, so I’m afraid I just don’t have a lot of knowledge about this aspect.


How far back to go and tell your previous partners is really just a judgment call on your part. If I thought for a moment one of my previous partners would blab my status to the world, I personally wouldn’t tell them—especially when the diagnosis was new. For anyone you do trust wouldn’t blab, I would just be really straightforward, state the facts of the situation and maybe a web link to more information and call it good. It’s up to them to research in more detail if they want.


In my case, I told my ex-husband by e-mail and the guy I was seeing at the time I got my diagnosis. Both later tested negative, so I know I picked up the virus before getting married, and I just have absolutely no way of knowing how to reach the handful of previous partners I had that many years ago.

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