Avatar universal

Can I be HSV-1 Negative if I have has several cold sore in the past?

This is odd. I recently had a blood test done to test for antibodies from HSV1 and HSV2. I've been having some symptoms on my genitals that most likely are fungal related but I needed to confirm the it was not HSV2. The lab test offered both HSV1 and 2 for the same price to I decided to test for both.

I was sure my HSV1 results would be positive because I have had occasional cold sores for years (probably 10 plus years). These symptoms would be a slight irritation in the skin on the border of my lower lips that shows a small white spot, this spot will grow and eventually become a large painful zit looking thing that is super sore and filled with pus, it breaks or pops eventually and scabs over. The pain goes away significantly after it pops and heels without scaring. This is usually brought on when I get sick or if I get sunburned lips or cracked and chapped lips when camping or something. Also, I would like to note that I haven't had a "cold sore' in about 18months. I sued to get them about once every 6 months but they seem to have stop although I haven't been sick in that time either. One other important note is that it is not alway in the same place, but almost alway on my bottom lip where the lip skin connects to normals face skin.

Here is the strange thing. Just got my test results back yesterday and they were negative for both hsv1 and hsv2. "No antibodies found". Is there a chance that I was not getting cold sore all this time but something else similar?

Should I expect that this is a false negative and get retested? Should I also question the negative results for my HSV2 test?

Thanks for your help.

6 Responses
Avatar universal
HSV1 testing can miss about 1 in 10 infections. Hence it is possible that you are infected with HSV1.

Your description has some hallmarks of being a herpes lesion, but bot the pus. If it is filled with white pus of a cream like texture then there is the suspicion this isn't herpes.

No reason to doubt the HSV2 test result that will be about 99% accurate from 4 months after exposure.
Avatar universal
Fleet, if he takes let's say multiple tests and all negative, does that 1 out of 10 false negative apply here. Is he truly negative with multiple tests or simply the tests just miss it over and over? What should he do in this spot to confirm his status because I not have a clue. So odd this happens with people with herpes.

I see this often with HSV1 and don't really understand...
Avatar universal
It does appear that the people who test 'false negative' do so in multiple tests for HSV1.

This is not the key issue for the OP who is concerned about HSV2. The concern is whether inaccuracy of HSV1 testing has implications for the HSV2 test. It does not.

The reasons for the lower level of accuracy of for HSV1 testing is unknown. For whatever reason, some people's antibodies do not get attracted to the gG-1 antigen in commercial tests. Is it due to the immune response (as IgG antibodies are 1 of up to a 100 different parts of the immune system) or the multiple different strains of HSV1? No one really knows.

It is not necessary to understand whether someone is HSV1 positive or not for such a common virus. If you want the best possible information then I would take a Westernblot test and say 2 swabs of separate fresh lesions. If these are negative, then you are as close to 100% as mathematically possible.
101028 tn?1419603004
the best thing to do in this situation is to get swabbed the next time you have symptoms. Do it within 48 hours of the start of your oral symptoms.

Avatar universal
Thanks for taking the time with this. I will get a swab test next time I have a symptom and post my findings.

In the event I am truly negative for hsv1, what would be another possible explanation for a herpes like sore on my lip? There is definitely pus in the sore. I assumed it was a cold sore, but really the best way I could describe it would be a large painful zit that always appears somewhere on my bottom lip where the lip skin meets the normal skin on my face. It pops and releases some zit like pus, a little blood and scabs over and heals.

Thanks again.
Avatar universal
The pus will not be related to herpes, it pretty much rules it out. Pus will only be a feature of a herpes lesion becomes infected after it ulcerates.

This could readily be an issue with a blocked pore or duct that becomes infected. Staph is very often mistaken for herpes, but this doesn't fit your description too well.
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