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Follow up testing for low positive HSV 2 results

I went Monday to my dr to get my annual checkup and STD screening.  Yesterday I received a call back stating that I was positive for HSV 1 and HSV 2.  The nurse that called me was adamant that I had HSV 2 (I already knew about the HSV 1 as I have the test done each year and had my first cold sore at 14).  I told her I am low risk and asked about the chances of a false positive.  She said it wasn't a possibility and told me she had called me in a prescription for Valtrex.  I asked her if I could have the test redone and she said there is no point in doing so.

After I got off the phone with her I did some research regarding testing, results, etc.  I called back to get an appointment with my dr and find out more about my results and went later in the day.  It was an igG test

HSV 1- over 50
HSV 2- 1.17

My dr did say that there is a chance that it is a false positive and I have about a 50/50 chance of having it.  She told me to come back in a month to re-test to see if the HSV 2 antibodies are higher.

When I had my test done last year I tested negative for HSV 2 and have only had one partner since then who is my boyfriend now of 5 months.  He has had 3 partners (me included) in the past 16 years and has never had any symptoms.  I also have never had any symptoms related to this condition.

My question is this:  Should I wait a month to get re-tested with the same test at my dr's office and risk the same thing and then go to a WB test or should I just skip the re-testing and go straight for the WB test now?  I can't imagine waiting a month to get a firm answer to this question.

He and I have been together for longer than 16 weeks which is what I understand to be the best time to test after exposure.
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Avatar universal
This looks almost certainly to be a false positive, even to the extent of not worrying about it any further, particularly if your partner is negative for HSV2.
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Avatar universal
Welll, I just got the results from my follow up and now it's 1.15. My doctor is on vacation until next week and I am going to ask about a WB when she gets back. Still no symptoms on myself or my boyfriend. The nurse that called me said it wasn't a false positive if it's still showing up. Wound up explaining to her with me having it orally the low reading does indicate I might not have it. Especially with it still being so low a month later. This is frustrating.
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Avatar universal
Your thinking is correct. We do see a number of people with HSV1 triggering a low positive HSV2. Maybe it is related to cross reactivity or maybe just a false positive from elements in the blood other than true antibodies.

I saw a rule of thumb years ago that suggested a ratio of more than 10 between ELISA results of HSV1 and HSV2 was indicative of the lower value being a negative. This may not be of the fullest credibility but it seems to apply more often than not.

Again the figure is so low that without genital lesions I'd assume this is a false positive. A Westernblot would put the issue behind you for sure.
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Avatar universal
I received the results of my western blot today after 3 weeks of waiting and it was negative for hsv 2.
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Avatar universal
Hey that's good news, glad the WB was able to provide you with clarity.
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Avatar universal
hello guys,
I am in the same situation. I never had any sores on genital just around mouth since I am a kid. In August my IGG for HSV1 was above 55 and HSV2 was 1.19. My md told me that it was probably a false positive and that I should retest later on. In mid october I retested and my HSV1 was around 50 whereas my HSV2 was 1.34. My doc told me he was convinced that it was a false positive. On top of that my IGG for HSV2 went up of .15. I cannot believe him I want a WB and It seems impossible to get it in NY state. I have try couple of lab nobody will allow me to draw blood and send samples. I am so pissed off. do you know any other test or place where I can go in NY to do it. Very frustrated! We live in a third world country!!!
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