Avatar universal

Broken Condom, Scary Symptoms, Afraid That I may Have Contracted Herpes Last Week

Hi, I wanted to know if someone could help me with my situation? I'm male, circumcised.

Last week on 5/8, I visited a Korean massage parlor in the morning. We both wore masks the entire time. The attendant performed condom protected oral sex on me, and then during condom protected vaginal, the condom broke and I ejaculated inside of her. I was not inside her unprotected for any more than 30 seconds and only the top 1/3 of my penis was exposed. But I know this is still an unprotected exposure. I immediately washed myself off with soap and water. Including inside my urethra. She the applied rubbing alcohol to me also, again, inside my urethra as well. I then went to the bathroom to urinate. She also seemed scared when the condom broke and said she didn't have anything. On my way home, I felt some irritation to the head of my penis but figured it was just irritation.

When I got home, I took 500mg of leftover amoxicillin (Bad idea, I know, but I was too afraid to think straight.) I got a headache later that night. Maybe from the amoxicillin? My throat started to feel strange. Not sore, but like something was swollen back there. I check it and it looked normal. But it definitely felt like something was swollen on the right side, especially with my neck tilted to certain positions. The next morning, I took 3g of amoxicillin and got an even worse headache later in the day. My head rate was also much faster for the next 2 days.

The next day (2 days after the exposure) the symptoms started. It was a mild burning at the head of my penis (mostly the sides of the head and the space in between the head and the shaft. I also had burning in my urethra. Mostly at the tip and inside the top 1/3 of the urethra. These spaces each usually only burn one at a time, not at the same time. That night, I applied Lotrimin Ultra antifungal cream to the head and the burning seemed to ease up in just 20 or so minutes. I went to bed and visited the clinic the next morning. The burning was still there and they took a urine test for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, but it'll be 2 weeks until I get the results. I was negative for HIV. I continued to apply the antifungal cream and the burning has become intermittent. My heart rate has also returned to normal (when I'm relaxed and not as anxious). I've been checking constantly with a magnifying glass for blisters but haven't found anything yet. No discharge either. I've also been checking my temperature and it has been normal.

But last night, (5 days after the exposure) I started to experience flu like symptoms. That is, My body felt warm, but had no temperature whenever I check with a thermometer. But I also had shivers and felt cold too. I also have shortness of breath. When I breathe in, my lungs feel, strange.

I woke up today, the chills were gone, but I still have intermittent urethra twinges of pain. I feel warm (but my temperature is normal. ranging from 97.9 - 98.8. And at once instance after a shower, 99.6.), and I just feel off. I still haven't noticed any blisters or redness, and no discharge. The only clear symptoms I've experienced so far are the headaches, swollen throat feeling, elevated heart rate, burning penis head, burning urethra, warm feeling body with no temperature, brief chills with shivering, shortness of breath and weird feeling in lungs when breathing. I already know that I have HSV-1 from a previous test but I've never had a cold sore. I also tested negative for HSV-2 about 4 months ago.

My questions are as follows:

1. When someone is infected with HSV-2 (and they already have HSV-1), is a burning penis head and urethra usually the first symptom, BEFORE any blisters appear?

2. Do the flu like symptoms usually begin BEFORE the blisters appear, or after?

3. What are the chances that someone would catch HSV-2 in my situation, with that kind of exposure. Broken condom exposing the top 1/3 of penis for 30 seconds and ejaculation with a Korean massage parlor worker of unknown status. Followed by soap and water, rubbing alcohol and urination. Would the virus easily transmit in this situation?

4. Do my symptoms sound like herpes prodome symptoms?

5. If not herpes, what else do you think would cause these symptoms in such a short amount of time.

6. And finally, do you think I'm likely to start seeing blisters in the next couple of days? And if I don't see any, do you think that it makes herpes unlikely?

Thank you so much for your help. This is the most afraid I've ever been in my life, and just talking about this here gives me a little bit of relief. This is going to be a long 3 months until I can get a blood test. Thanks again!
1 Responses
Avatar universal
Sorry, just wanted to make a correction. I noticed the burning on the 3rd day after exposure, not the 2nd day. And I went to the clinic on the 4th day
I want to answer this question first:

3. What are the chances that someone would catch HSV-2 in my situation, with that kind of exposure. Broken condom exposing the top 1/3 of penis for 30 seconds and ejaculation with a Korean massage parlor worker of unknown status. Followed by soap and water, rubbing alcohol and urination. Would the virus easily transmit in this situation?

The chances that you'd get herpes from this are very low. You were unprotected for a very brief time,

The washing after doesn't do a thing, nor does the alochol (that really just causes irritation - alcohol doesn't need to ever be used on your penis unless specifically directed by your doctor). The urination after may help prevent urinary tract infection, and perhaps gonorrhea, chlamydia, and NGU, but not herpes.

Herpes is not a urethral infection, though you can get sores in your urethra. It's a skin infection. You get infected by direct skin to skin contact- your genital skin coming into contact with someone else's genital skin.

1. When someone is infected with HSV-2 (and they already have HSV-1), is a burning penis head and urethra usually the first symptom, BEFORE any blisters appear?

There is no set pattern of what appears first, and having hsv1 first doesn't affect that. However, you wouldn't have all these symptoms for this long and not get blisters yet if this was herpes.

2. Do the flu like symptoms usually begin BEFORE the blisters appear, or after?

It all usually happens within several hours of each other, whether before or after, not several days. See #1.

4. Do my symptoms sound like herpes prodome symptoms?

Prodome lasts several hours, maybe at the most for a day or two absolute tops, not several days.

5. If not herpes, what else do you think would cause these symptoms in such a short amount of time.

STD symptoms take at the minimum 2 days to appear. Any of your symptoms could be from the alcohol, from the amox, and from stress. You could also have gotten gonorrhea, chlamydia, or even a urinary tract infection from the alcohol or soap if any of it got inside your urethra.

6. And finally, do you think I'm likely to start seeing blisters in the next couple of days? And if I don't see any, do you think that it makes herpes unlikely?

I think herpes is unlikely already, and you don't need a magnifying glass to look for blisters. If you get them, you will be able to see them without magnification. You also don't need to check "constantly". Check once a day.

And on a different note - since you took the amox, your chlamydia and gonorrhea tests may not be accurate if they come back negative. Taking antibiotics before the tests can cause false negatives.

While you wait for your results, make sure you are drinking plenty of water (don't go overboard), and lay off the caffeine, juice, sports/energy drinks, and alcohol.

Let us know what you find out.
Thank you very much for your response @auntiejessi! With that, all of a sudden, some of the weird symptoms have lessened! They're still there but much, much less, so maybe it was partly just anxiety and the amoxicillin.

If it's not too much trouble, could I ask just 2 more questions?

1. I have another clinic visit to check for chlamydia and gonorrhea again, scheduled for the 18th. I took the 3g of amoxicillin on the 9th, would this be enough time for the amoxicillin to be cleared from my system and not interfere with the tests on the 18th?

2. I ordered an at home HSV-2 test from MyLabBox. I want to try to convince the massage parlor worker to take the test and I could mail it in to see whether or not she has HSV-2. Waiting the 3 months to take it myself would probably be the death of me (I will still take it though). Are you familiar with these at home tests? I've taken it before and it was a card with 5 circles that you put blood from your finger on and mail it in. Are these tests accurate at all? Or just a waste of money? I don't remember exactly what the test was called, but it was an HSV-2 test and I think it had "ELISA" in the name. I've also tried LetsGetChecked for the same test and they include a small glass vial to collect the blood. Is that test better?

Thank you again for your quick and well informed response! The peace of mind you've given me from this literally feels like a 200 lb weight has been lifted! I'll keep you updated for anyone else that might have similar symptoms in the future.
1 - If you can push that appt back another week, that would be better. It's not so much about getting the amox out of your system, but about making sure the amox hasn't slowed the growth of the bacteria enough to not show on a test.

2 - Leave the poor woman at the massage place alone. Even if she has it, it doesn't mean you got it. There are also false positives on hsv2 tests, so if she got a false positive, she'd have to get a Western Blot test, and it's not easy to get and it's expensive. She doesn't owe you that. You voluntarily had sex with her, and took a risk. Your health is your responsibility, and the chances that this is herpes is so low.

I haven't heard of MyLabBox, but this part is concerning:

"When Should You Take an At-Home Herpes Test?

Timing is everything when it comes to taking an at-home herpes test. This is because STDs are not immediately detectable in your system, so if you test too soon after exposure, your results may not be accurate.

Most people begin to experience their first outbreak within 4 days following the initial exposure, but the incubation period for genital herpes ranges from 2 to 12 days. This means herpes may not be detectable for up to 12 days after you are exposed to it. As a result, you should not take an STD test within the first 2 to 12 days following the initial exposure. If you test negative within the first 2 to 12 days, it’s best to retest after two weeks has passed to confirm your results."

This makes it sound like it's an IgM blood test, not an IgG. IgM tests are useless. They are wrong as often as they are right, at least.

I'd go with LetsGetChecked or STDCheck, whichever is more convenient for you.

I understand that you have symptoms, but given that a lot of them got better as you read this suggests that a lot are anxiety, right? Your reaction to this is really out of proportion to the risk here. I understand she's a sex worker, but sex workers wear protection to protect themselves from you, not the other way around. Their jobs and lives depend on it. You said she was scared when the condom broke - I'm sure she was. You ejaculated inside her. She has no idea who you are, and what you have. I don't mean to sound harsh, but to offer some perspective. You're freaking about herpes, and she probably went on PEP for HIV.

So really, take some deep breaths. Your risks for anything are very low. Go do something fun this weekend and take your mind off this. :) I'm not around on weekends - those are always my time, so you should stay off the computer, and enjoy yours, too. :)

Okay I understand, I'll try to reschedule the appointment then.

Okay I'll leave her alone, I wasn't planning to coerce her, just nicely ask her and offer to pay for helping me if she was okay with it. I didn't mean to seem insensitive towards her. I still haven't had any blisters yet, so hopefully this isn't herpes. The burning is still there, but it's on and off and very rare now, my lungs still feel weird/shortness of breath like it's uncomfortable to fully inhale.  And now my inner thighs, right where my lymph nodes are, are starting to burn slightly. Not swollen or tender yet, but I feel like that may be coming soon. Maybe responding to whatever I may have caught. As long as it's not herpes, I think I'll be okay.

I think it WAS an IGG test, but I can't see the results anymore now for some reason. I'll just wait to get checked at the clinic once 3 months passes.

Thank you again for your time and your insight! I'll keep you posted if learn anything about what's happening.

Well, against better judgement, I went back to the massage parlor asking the therapist if she'd be okay with taking a herpes test. She said yes because she wanted to know what her results were too. I paid her for her time, she collected the sample and I mailed it in for her. Well, I just got the results back from LetsGetChecked and it came back positive for both HSV-1 and HSV-2. Now I'm truly terrified. I don't think I've seen any blisters yet and the head of my penis rarely burns now, but it still does from time to time, as does my urethra. Also, after I masturbated last night, the tip of my penis swelled up very badly. It's still slightly swollen this morning. I've been taking probiotics and vitamins and the anxiety and heart palpitations have lessened. But they're still there (maybe from the amoxicillin?). I also, tested negative for chlamydia and gonorrhea, although I know I should retake those tests. I think I'm done for now.

1) Since she is HSV-2 positive. How likely is it that I caught it from that exposure? 15% chance? 50% chance? If she could catch it, I'm sure I could too. I haven't noticed any obvious blisters yet, but I know that many people don't show obvious symptoms.  And since she was positive without knowing, maybe I will be too. And the burning penis should be cause for concern now, shouldn't it? I thought it was fungal, because of the amoxicillin, but now I'm not too confident.

2) What's the soonest that I can get tested for "somewhat" accurate results? I know that you're supposed to wait 12 weeks. But if I take it at say, 6 weeks, will that provide any sort of accuracy?

3) It's been 12 days post exposure, if I still haven't "noticed" any blisters yet, can I still expect them in the coming days? Thank you again for you insight. I truly feel like this is it.
So you have her results? This is not good for you, and a real invasion of her privacy. I would have totally advised against this. And now you are going to tell her about this, with no medical counseling?

What are the actual results? Is there an index value to it? It should say something like:

HSVI IgG 5.9

The numbers will be different, but it should have two different sets of numbers. What are her numbers?

So all that said -

1 - The chances that you caught it are still very slim. You were mostly protected, and the chances that you'd get it from a one-time protected encounter are very, very low.

2 - At 6 weeks, 70% will have developed antibodies.

3 - This isn't "it". You are definitely catastrophising this. I think the chances that you didn't actually get this are way, way better than you did.

Please, when you tell her about this, have her come here and talk to me. There are decent chances, depending on the results, that this could be a false positive. I don't mean to sound harsh with you, but this has opened a huge Pandora's Box, and she may need a really expensive (several hundred dollars) Western Blot test to straighten this out, and she may not be able to afford that.

You need counseling. Your anxiety is affecting others, and that's not fair.
I asked her if she would be okay with it and she said that she wanted to know whether or not if she was positive, and that it would give both of us peace of mind. Is it wrong to know the status of a sexual partner, whether romantic, commercial or otherwise? Even if they want to know it too? I don't know why it was wrong, since both of us were consenting to it. Would it have been better for both her and I to remain in the dark about our statuses and potentially unknowingly infect other people? It was never meant as an invasion of her privacy, but rather for the safety of both of us.

Her results were:

HSV-1: 57.20 Positive

HSV-2: 12.60 Positive

Are my chances still slim, even though I was unprotected? I know it was only for about 30 seconds, but can't the virus still easily enter the skin of the exposed area, especially if there were any abrasions caused by the encounter? And even though the virus sheds, even if there is not visible outbreak?

Is she required to take a Western Blot test? I didn't submit any of her personal information with the test and I just got the results today, so I haven't had a chance to tell her yet. But wouldn't it be better for her to know and then if she so chooses, make a decision whether or not she wants to take the Western Blot test? I'm definitely anxious, but in this situation, where we were both at risk, isn't it better to take steps to confirm our statuses since we were both unprotected? I hope I don't sound rude, I just feel that if we both want to know, it's better to try to find out, since we're both afraid. I'll tell her about this forum when I tell her her results. Again, I asked her if she would be okay with a test and she said yes and that she wanted one to know her results also. She even asked me the name of the website that I got the test from, so that she could take the other STD tests that they have there.
No, she isn't required to take the WB - no one is. It can be helpful to sort out low positives. Some opt to take it to know either way, some don't.  Her test is not in the false positive range.

I'm not questioning her motives. I'm questioning the way this was handled. Her results should have gone to her. You should have put her name and email address in the system, not yours. This is also now a part of your medical record since it's under your name.

Even though there was some brief unprotected contact, it is not a guarantee that you'll get it.

If you were in a relationship with her, and the only precautions you took were to avoid sex when she had an outbreak, and had sex 2-3 times a week, there is a 4% chance you'd get it over the course of a year. That means there is a 96% chance you wouldn't.

For a one time, mostly protected encounter, the chances are close to zero.

The virus doesn't shed every day. Even when it does, it might not be shedding enough virus to transmit, and we don't know how much virus it takes to transmit, and suspect that it's different for everyone, anyway.

So this is very, very far from being it.
I see. Maybe she is positive because she has had more exposures and therefore more chances to acquire it?

If she was having an outbreak during the exposure and didn't know, I wonder if that would guarantee transmission, or at least make it a very likely possibility.

I didn't use my name or email address for the test either, so it shouldn't be part of my medical records but she was completely okay with us doing it this way also (me submitting the test and telling her the results, since I was much more afraid than she was). The LetsGetChecked website offers consulting for the results, so I'm going to give her the login information to get into the account and explain how to contact them for a consultation. Like you said, I have no medical counselling experience, so it's probably better for her to learn her results from there, instead of from me telling her, since they'd do a better job than I could. I'll also tell her about this site too. I feel terrible for her that she's positive and I'm still terrified that I may have it now too, but with this information, at least we know the likely reality of our situation now.  Hopefully she wasn't having an outbreak at the time. Since she didn't know she had it, I'm assuming she's probably either never had an outbreak, or had very mild ones. I'm hoping that that's not the case with me too. Hopefully these penis symptoms are just balanitis from the antibiotics and not herpes symptoms.

Thank you again for your time and insight. I'll keep you updated about this situation as things develop.
If she was having an outbreak at the time you had sex with her, she'd probably know. I've had hsv2 for a long time, and I know when I'm having outbreaks.

If you think you have balanitis, you need to see your doctor. If the head of your penis is still swollen, let your doctor check that out. That wouldn't be from herpes, or probably not from balanitis, either. This most often happens when you masturbate too long and perhaps too tightly.

I think it's a great idea to let her get the counseling from the site, and I hope she comes here. I'd be happy to talk to her.

The chances that you got it are very, very slim. Try to remember that.

So yesterday, I went back the the massage parlor and gave the masseuse the information for checking the results. I also told her about this site and tried to show her how to sign in, but she seemed pretty nonchalant about the whole thing and waved off my explanation. She didn't really seem afraid and said that she's "been doing this kind of work for a long time, so as long as it's not HIV, no problem". I told her that I definitely didn't have HIV (I got tested at the Planned Parenthood) and left.

After that I went to the health clinic about my burning penis and swelling from the day before. I voiced my concerns about herpes but the doctor didn't seem worried about it, even though the masseuse is HSV-2 positive. She didn't really explain much and kind of only glanced at my penis before saying, that it's probably chlamydia, even though I told her that I tested negative for that, 4-5 days post exposure. She also said that that first test wasn't too soon to test, so it made me very confused. But she was really dismissive, hurried and detached from the appointment, so I'm not sure if I should get a second opinion. She gave me a urine test and prescribed me doxycycline to take 100mg, every 12 hours for 1 week. I've taken 2 so far. She also said that the amoxicillin couldn't cause the heart pounding, anxiety and gut bacteria and vitamin depletion, even though those are listed in the drug's side effects.

But last night, I felt warm again (no temperature though) and had about 3 white spots on one of my tonsils. These spots later fell out after I brushed my teeth and as I slept. This coincided with the return of my burning penis. So my body must be reacting to some infection.

So I just wanted to know:

1) Can either herpes or chlamydia affect the throat at all in this way. Maybe the chlamydia returned because the initial amoxicillin kept it weakened until now?

2) It's 13 days post exposure and I still haven't noticed any obvious blisters yet. I've read that they are supposed to appear within 2-20 days post exposure, so assuming that someone has been newly infected, is it typical for them to appear after 13 days post exposure? Or do they usually appear before that on average? I'm just trying to rule out whether I may have caught BOTH chlamydia AND herpes, have only felt chlamydia symptoms until now, but could still potentially have herpes symptoms in the coming days.

3) Since the masseuse's HSV-2: number was 12.60, does that imply that she's has it for a long time? And would that make it less likely that it would be spread as easily, since outbreaks and shedding become less frequent over time? Or does it not work like that?

Thank you so much for answering all of these question up until now. It's just there's so much conflicting information out there like, "most people with herpes never have symptoms/you don't have blisters, so you don't have herpes", "symptoms start between 2-20 days/between 2-14 days"... etc. so it's hard to know what to believe.
Did the most recent doctor know you were on amox when you tested?

1 - If you didn't give oral sex, you wouldn't have oral symptoms from anything related to this. You wouldn't have oral chlamydia without giving oral sex.

It could, however, have been masked by the amox. If that's the case, the doxy will cure it.

2 - 4 days is the average for herpes sores to appear. You don't know yet that you got anything. You are acting as if you caught both, and you don't know that you have anything.

3 - The number means absolutely nothing, except that she's had it for longer than a few weeks. In theory, it takes up to 12 weeks to develop antibodies, but most do well before that. I did at just over 2 weeks. We don't know how often she tests, if she's honest, or anything. She could test tomorrow and get an 8.4 and next week and get an 11.3. It means nothing. We know that shedding decreases after the first year, and then drops again after 10 years. If people have more frequent outbreaks, they shed more, but we know nothing about that with her.

That also doesn't change the fact that you had 30 seconds of unprotected contact with her, which is not all that risky. That's the most important fact, no matter what was happening with her.

It doesn't matter about 2-12 or 2-14 days, or whatever. What matters is that your risk is really low. The health clinic wasn't worried because your risk is really low. It's fair that they put you on doxy because you have burning. Make sure you drink plenty of water, too.

Your herpes risk, even though she's positive, is really low. She performed condom-protected oral on you, and the condom broke and you had seconds of unprotected contact during sex. Try and remember that.

Also, please seek counseling. Your thinking is catastrophic. It's out of proportion to the risk. And stay away from Google and the internet. You are breaking yourself down.


Hi Auntjessie,

Yeah, she knew about the amox. But the strange thing was, when I told her about it and how I was told that it might cause the tests to come up negative, she responded with "No. That's not true." So now I'm not sure what to believe. All I know is that I now have symptoms that I didn't have before this exposure.

I know that it often takes multiple exposures before the virus transmits, but is there also a time duration that intercourse needs to take place for, for it to transmit. Does 30 seconds really make the chances that low, if for example, I had a cut or she had a large viral load at the time?

Well, I got the results back for the second urine test today, and everything came back negative. I'm at a loss for what could be causing my symptoms now. I'm almost done with the doxycycline and they said that I can stop taking it now that the test is negative. My urethra symptoms are much weaker now and rare, but still there from time to time, but the same part of my penis (between the head and the shaft) still burns from time to time, and even itches at times now too. My penis also itches on the underside near the base, intermittently. If this isn't bacterial, and LIKELY isn't herpes, could it be fungal? I'm still using antifungal cream and I'm not sure if it's helping or if it's just because of the time that's passed. I guess all there is to do now is wait to get tested at 6 weeks, and if I turn up negative, again at 3 months. With all these things seemingly pointing me to herpes, (exposure with HSV-2 positive partner, symptoms starting how and when they did, the fact that most people don't have typical symptoms like blisters or obvious lesions, the fact that it only takes one exposure to transmit) I feel like I can't rule herpes out until I get confirmation from a blood test at 3 months. The anxiety is mostly gone, I just can't think of what else this could be at this point. I'll post my results when I'm finally able to test accurately at 6 weeks and 3 months. Thanks again for all your advice and information.
It could be fungal. It could be anxiety. It could have been mycoplasma or something they didn't test for.

Again, with herpes, you don't get vague symptoms without having actual blisters. You put soap and alcohol INSIDE your urethra. Perhaps you had irritation, or worse, chemically burned it. Neither are meant for internal use. Maybe what you are feeling is the healing process.

You've also taken a ton of antibiotics, so maybe you have a fungal infection - entirely possible.

You didn't have a cut at the time - you'd have mentioned that long before now. That's your anxiety talking. As to viral load, we don't really know what a "large viral load" is with herpes, or what it takes to transmit and suspect it's different for everyone.

It does take time and friction. That, too, is probably different for everyone. Everyone has different skin, and no one can replicate her skin and your skin to be able to give you an exact scenario, and even if we could, we couldn't go back in time to determine if she was shedding.

People with hsv2 less than a year shed on average about 30% of days a year. Shedding episodes can last a few hours, or as long as several hours. Assuming she sheds everyone one of those days, that's 110 days a year. Then you'd have to drill down and assume that she was shedding during those exact 30 seconds, and assume that she was shedding enough to transmit it to someone else.

If she had it more than a year, she would be shedding less, but you get the idea.

The chances of you getting it are so unlikely. I just don't know how else to say it.

Thank you so much! Sorry I've been so doubtful about all this. It's such a scary situation and I truly believe that all those antibiotics messed with my gut flora, and in part caused that intense anxiety. I've never had anxiety before, so I never realized how profoundly it could PHYSICALLY affect someone. I can tell that you truly know what you're talking about and I feel now that I probably don't have it, like you said. It could very well be fungal. For the past couple of days, my inner thigh has been burning and today, I noticed a small wet pink patch of broken skin there. Probably jock itch. So irritation and fungus could likely be the cause, like you said. I'll still get tested when I can and report back, but you've put my mind at ease. I truly can't thank you enough. Thank you so much!
Just wanted to update that I took an at home blood test with Let's Get Checked on 6/9/2021 (4.5 weeks post exposure) and it came back NEGATIVE for HSV 2. I know it's too early to be accurate (50%  of previously HSV1/2 negative people test positive at 4 weeks, I believe?) but I just wanted to keep you posted. My figures were:

HSV1 Ab IgG Result (LGC) 35.50 H Pl
Reference Range: <=0.89

HSV2 Ab IgG Result (LGC) 0.25 Pl
Reference Range <=0.89

I'm now 80% convinced that I'm in the clear, just as you told me. But I'll get tested again at the 3 month mark, just to be 100% sure. I was just wondering, is that 0.25 figure indicative of anything, aside from me being negative? In other words, would newly positive person (infected 4.5 weeks prior) have a figure closer to the 0.89 threshold? Or maybe test EQUIVOCAL at around 0.91-1.10? Or does the figure start low, like at 0.25 and then antibodies are made and then the figure suddenly jump up to an equivocal figure? I guess what I'm asking is, is antibody production a gradually process over the course of 3 months? Or do they just suddenly appear at some point within those 3 months. I'm not really afraid anymore, I'm just curious how it all works. Thank you again for  everything, I feel I'm finally almost in the clear
It doesn't indicate anything other than you being negative. No one ever gets a true 0.0 on the test. It's just the way the test works - consider it background noise on the test.

70% develop antibodies by 6 weeks, so not having a higher number by now is an excellent sign. It's not for sure saying you didn't get hsv2, but given that it was a 30 second exposure, and your number isn't higher yet, it's an excellent sign.

To know how your number develops, you'd have to test daily, and you don't want to do that. Even in studies, they don't do that, so it's hard to say how gradual the rise is.

I didn't think you needed to worry in the first place, and still don't. I think you'll test at 3 months to ease your mind, and that's fine, but I would be very surprised if it's positive then.
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