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Herpes type 1 concern?

Around october 5th, I had unprotected oral sex with a friend and protected oral sex. Roughly three days later I had a full pain in my testicles which lasted 3 days and a frequent urge to pee which lasted a day. Shortly after, I’m not sure when as far as a time frame, I had a blister like lesion under my foreskin. The lesion didn’t cause much pain and I actually broke the lesion open and as far as I can remember there was no fluid. I didn’t pay much attention to the lesion after that as it healed on its own. I assumed it was a penile yeast infection or Balanitis.

At 6 weeks I tested for both hsv-1 and hsv-2 and it came back negative. I also tested at 8 weeks for both hsv-1 and hsv-2 negative (both test done at Kaiser). I am extremely worried that I made a huge mistake by having unprotected oral sex.

My question is, if I had symptoms and have no previous hsv-1 wouldn’t my results come back as having some type of detectable antibody upon week 6 (5 week post onset) or 8 weeks (7 weeks post onset)?

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Avatar universal
Both test were igg specific test and I wasn’t told the numbers of the test just “negative”
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Yes, I would imagine that by 8 weeks, you'd be positive. Most people test positive by 6 weeks.

If you get another blister, do not pop it. Let a doctor culture it and see if it comes back as anything.

Herpes probably wouldn't cause testicular pain or frequency with urination. If you still have those symptoms, get checked for gonorrhea, NGU or a UTI. A urine test can check for all of those.
Correction, it was unprotected oral sex. Also she was sick.

My additional question is could it be adenovirus? Probably a week after the frequency in urine and dull pain in testicles, I would have really itchy eyes, and pain in both eyes causing migraines, as well as a sore throat.
Yes, absolutely. Adenovirus can cause NGU. If she had adenovirus, that germ can get into your urethra, and cause genital symptoms.


https://bmcinfectdis.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12879-015-1043-4 - Adenoviruses may account for 2–4 % of symptomatic patients and this is often associated with conjunctivitis (conjuctivitus is pink eye) - personally, I think it's higher than 2-4%, because most causes of NGU are never found as testing past finding elevated WBCs doesn't often happen.


Whew! That’s what I’m leaning towards. The only thing that is throwing me off is the “lesion”, and at this point I don’t really remember how it looked. I do remember it had no fluid, I picked it off with basically no pain, and I tested negative 7 weeks after the onset of both the lesion and the testicular pain.

My last question would be do you think it’s likely not herpes due to the fact of me texting negative so far out and having “symptoms” ? I’m basically thinking since I had symptoms then I would For sure  have some type of antibody at 8 weeks or at least be  in the equivocal zone.
I agree that with symptoms, you'd be positive or equivocal by now.

Your non-fluid filled spot doesn't sound like typical herpes symptoms, and could really be so many different things - irritation, smegma, a fungal infection, eczema, dermatitis, balanitis - the list is long and varied. If it ever comes back, let the doctor see it promptly.

A herpes outbreak would also last at least a week, especially if it was your first. If you just picked this area off, and nothing else happened, it's not herpes.
Last couple questionA,  from what I understand herpes starts as a red bump, then blister, then ulcer, then scab, correct?

Typically, especially if you don’t have any type of herpes infection, the first episode is pretty harsh correct? I’m really worried about type 1, due to unprotected oral.

The blister like lesion that I’m referring to, if it was a blister, was white, closed, and I picked it off, and didn’t see any fluid. I also don’t remember it scabbing.
Also, I’ve seen a study where adenovirus caused a penile ulcer, vaginal ulcer, or Balanitis. Maybe I’m just putting too much into this lol
Yes, you're correct on herpes typical symptoms, and it's usually more severe when you have neither type already.

If it were a herpes sore, you wouldn't be able to just pick it off and have nothing there. If I'm picturing it correctly, that sounds like dry or flaky skin to me.

Yes, adenoviruses can cause those things. It's not greatly studied in the genital area, so not a lot is known, but those are possible.

Try not to obsess over this. I know that's easy for me to say, but really, you're going to be fine.

I’m going to get a twelve week test next week, and I was wondering do you think this would be conclusive to move forrward if it was negative?

Given the fact that
1. She was sick and gave me oral sex?
2.  I had a “blister” and still tested negative at 6 and 8 weeks and not in the equivocal zone?
3. I had a slight sore throat and pain in my eyes two weeks later after the blister?
4. People around me came down with coughs, sore throats, and my young son had a few days where he complained of dysuria about 4 weeks after my symptoms (sorry for the increased information lol just trying to convince myself at this point)
I don't see any reason why you need to get a 12 week test. Most people will test positive by 6 weeks, as you did, as well as 8 weeks.

There are a lot of false positives on herpes tests, and that can send you down a spiral that can take weeks or months to get out of.

My guess is that you had balanitis and adenovirus.

If you get any other symptoms, which sounds unlikely at this point, get it checked by your doctor and let them culture it to be sure.

If you can't let it go and decide to test at 12 weeks, then yes, it will be conclusive.
I understand, and thank you for all your advice. My anxiety is just getting the best of me as I worry about being one of the people with missed hsv -1 infections.
Yes, the hsv1 test misses some infections, but your symptoms sound nothing like herpes. Given your symptoms aren't like herpes, and your negative tests, you really don't need to worry.

Also, add in that your partner was sick, that explains a lot of things. I think you can really move on. If you find you can't, consider speaking to someone about it. I don't know if anxiety is an overall issue for you, or if guilt is an issue here - and I don't need to know - but if there's something you need to work out or work on, a therapist can really help. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. :)
Does the fact that when I tore the “blister” off it looked like raw skin under change your mind? It wasn’t really an ulcer per say but Like how it would look if you peeled skin off.

Last question I promise aha
Sure. Anytime skin comes off, it looks like raw skin under it. That happens when you skin your knee. That's not exclusive to herpes.

And please, don't ever do that again lol. If you get a blister on your genitals again, let a doctor swab it. Also, a blister, whether on your feet or your genitals or hand or whatever, forms for a reason. Let it heal naturally. You could introduce bacteria into it that causes an infection that you really, really don't want.

Update: 12 week igg test was taken and the results were negative. Would that be considered conclusive in your opinion for hsv-1?
Yes, it's conclusive.
The Only thing that concerns me is miss hsv 1 infections. In your opinion in a perfectly healthy individual wouldn’t a 12 week test be enough time to develop antibodies? I see post on the forum that say wait until 16 weeks.
Yes, 12 weeks should be fine, but the test does miss about 30% of hsv1 infections, in healthy individuals or not.

Really though, if it is ghsv1, not much will change for you. It rarely sheds, it rarely transmits.

Shedding rates: (and you can find all this in the herpes handbook - https://westoverheights.com/herpes/the-updated-herpes-handbook/)

HSV 2 genital 15-30% of days evaluated

HSV 1 genital 3-5% of days evaluated
HSV 1 oral 25% of days evaluated

HSV 2 oral 1% of days evaluated

3-5% of days per year is about 11-18 days a year. By the time you've had it for a few years, that number goes down to about 4 days a year.

Obviously, it's your choice to continue to worry about hsv1 or not, but I just want to let you know that even if you do have it, your life won't likely change much at all.
I understand and thank you for all your advice. But based on symptoms (pain in testicles, frequent urination, no pain, blister like lesion in the first two weeks, and she was sick/getting over the flu)  and 3 negative hsv test would you be more inclined to say I didn’t have it ?
I've said all along that I don't think you have it.
Ok, last question aha. So thinking more and more about it, I remember the “blister lesion” to start off as a red patch that was under the skin. And then a few days later, there were  2 lesions. Both resembling blisters. One was already open. The other one wasn’t, and I broke that one open, and peeled it off. After I peeled them off, it didn’t really hurt. They weren’t tender nor anything of that nature. It really only bother me during intercourse. Does it sound like a typical hsv breakout now?

Again I tested negative at 12 weeks for both hsv 1 and 2, 11 weeks after onset. At this point it’s hard to move on without a diagnosis I guess and I’m also afraid to test again for the fear it might come back positive smh.
Also is there a huge difference in between testing at 3 months vs 4 months
It could be a herpes outbreak, or it could not be. The only way to know is to get them cultured when you get them. If it didn't hurt to peel it off, it probably isn't herpes.

If you get it again, by all means, DO NOT DO ANYTHING TO THEM, and let a doctor test it. I believe we've already covered this.

Statistically, there isn't a huge difference between 3 and 4 months for testing.

You've had 3 tests already. I see no reason for a 4th. If you can't move on from this, I'd suggest counseling, and I say that with kindness.
Thank you so much for everything again. I’ve noticed that you’ll find whatever you want on the internet. If you want things to support you are the few percentage that doesn’t test well on antibody test, you will. If you want to find things to support you don’t have herpes you will.

3 test, atypical symptoms, and evidence that I don’t have it and I still have a doubt aha. Its honestly just weird to think you could have genital problems and really have no answers lol but it’s also odd that things like adenovirus sand other viruses that can cause genital problems aren’t studied well.

Last question, would herpes manifest itself similarly to the first outbreak?
Yes, be careful on the internet. You can find anything to confirm your deepest fears.

You don't have herpes, but if you did, subsequent outbreaks are similar to primary/first outbreaks, but they tend to be less severe.


I just came  across something. If your test doesn’t have numbers but instead says negative or positive, does that make the test any less reliable ?
That's hard to say. We know that test results under 3.5 for hsv2 need to be confirmed since they can be false positives, so not having a number on it makes it hard to know if you need a confirmation test.

We don't know if this holds true for hsv1, though.

For negative results, not getting a number doesn't change anything. Have you seen your results? Does it only say negative, or is your doctor telling you they are negative? They may have a number that your doctor is just giving you as "negative".
I saw the results and it just says “negative”
Okay, it doesn't matter for negatives. If you were positive, I'd push for you to get a retest, but with negatives, that doesn't matter.
Avatar universal
5 months post exposure and symptoms had a negative test for both hsv 1 and 2.

Thank you so much for everything. Question I have now is does hydrocortisone help alleviate itching if rash is related to herpes ? Every where I’ve read says it makes it worse. Feeling 90 percent better about being negative. Just a random thought.
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No, if it's caused by herpes, hydrocortisone will make it worse. Herpes does not like steroidal creams.

Congrats on your negative tests! Accept it and be happy. :)
Can a reaccurance just show up as a red patch with no pain on the foreskin. The red patch showed up as flaky skin, and the patch lasted 3 days. No pain no itch. Never progressed to a blister or ulcer either.
Showed a picture to a doctor and they said it looked like irritation. Just paranoid I guess at this point.
You've had negative tests. You haven't had any blisters or ulcers, and your doctor doesn't think herpes. It doesn't get worse with hydrocortisone.

It's not herpes.

Trust the science. You don't have herpes. You just don't.

Maybe it's irritation, maybe it's a recurring fungal infection or eczema or dry skin or whatever - whatever it is, it isn't herpes. You can really let go of this now. You came through this unscathed.

I don't know if there's some kind of guilt, or if anxiety is something you deal with, or why you can't let this go, but if you still can't let it go, think about talking to someone about it. I say that with compassion and not criticism. You deserve to find peace.
I understand and I thank you for all that you do for the forum and answering my questions. I let my anxiety get the best of me from time to time and fall back into the rabbit whole.

Just a few more questions.

1) with the repeated negative testing wouldn’t the 25 percent that is missed for hsv 1 shrink over time especially if I took a different type of test ?

2) with the symptoms being 5 months before my last test, in your opinion would I have had enough time to make antibodies? Especially somebody who was negative in either type before?

3) reaccurant outbreaks would be blisters right ?

The only thing at this point that is worriesome to me is the lesion (started off as a red patch and I woke up one morning and it was like a white clear blister. Picked it off with no pain while picking it off)
Avatar universal
Once again thank you and I will look into some type of therapy. Because my anxiety is getting the best off me.
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Avatar universal
I understand and I thank you for all that you do for the forum and answering my questions. I let my anxiety get the best of me from time to time and fall back into the rabbit whole.

Just a few more questions.

1) with the repeated negative testing wouldn’t the 25 percent that is missed for hsv 1 shrink over time especially if I took a different type of test ?

2) with the symptoms being 5 months before my last test, in your opinion would I have had enough time to make antibodies? Especially somebody who was negative in either type before?

3) reaccurant outbreaks would be blisters right ?

The only thing at this point that is worriesome to me is the lesion (started off as a red patch and I woke up one morning and it was like a white clear blister. Picked it off with no pain while picking it off)
Helpful - 0
The blister wasn’t really fragile either. It was kind of tough to pick off.
It was two blisters, one was a little longer and one was already open.
No, it wouldn't shrink over time - it's an issue with the test. If you can't let it go, get a Western Blot test.

Your symptoms don't sound like herpes. Yes, the hsv1 IgG can miss 30% of infections, so get the WB if you can't let this go. Not much will change for you if you have hsv1, either orally or genitally, and the WB test can't tell you where you have it, only if you have it somewhere.

Seriously, though, look into counseling. I say that with compassion, not criticism.
In your opinion should I just move forward and accept my test?

Thank you for all that you do and your patience, it is greatly appreciated.
I would move forward and accept my test. You have a 12 week negative, and your symptoms sound nothing like herpes.

I would also get counseling. You deserve peace.

And you're welcome. :) That's what we're here for.
Ok ... one last thing to add on .... lol ... which would probably support your advice that I am truly negative. Once I saw the blister lesions and tore them off, I ran urine by them to see if it would burn, and it didn’t burn or cause any pain. I know it was a weird test, I have no idea what I was thinking looking back at it.

I also had a negative 8 month test as well

So my final questions, if I caught the blister soon would that matter in as far as fluid being in it? To clarify, I’m basically asking could I have caught the blister before it filled with liquid.

Second, assuming it was herpes wouldn’t urine touching the lesion after I tore the blister off cause pain or burning? Or would I have caught it before it ulcerated ?
You already know what I'm going to say.

You are WAY overthinking this. No, it doesn't sound like herpes. I can't imagine "tearing off" one of my herpes blisters - seriously, it makes my eyes water to even think of it, and I have a high pain tolerance. I can't imagine then urinating on it.

You have several negative tests.

I say this with all the compassion - LET IT GO. It's time for counseling if you can't.

I simply can't say it any other way. You know what I think. It's really, really time to let it go.
I understand I really do and I’m trying to move past this. But then I read stories like these two.


And this one. The first thread is the beginning and the second thread is an update saying he had a positive culture 11 months later.



It’s just so much uncertainty, especially with type 1.

There isn't uncertainty. I don't know what happened to Larry. That was 8 years ago. If you're so afraid, get the Western Blot test. I've already told you that. It won't tell you where you have it, though, just if you have hsv1.

Listen, I don't know Larry, but anyone can write anything on the internet. He may be completely honest, completely lying, or believing things that didn't happen, or have a false test. We don't know. Trust the science.

And get counseling. You don't even have symptoms now. Even if you had ghsv1, chances that you'd ever transmit it to anyone are close to zero. It would be essentially a non-issue in your life.

Get the counseling. I don't know if you cheated on someone, and I'm not going over all the previous posts to try and remember, but if it's guilt you're feeling, deal with that first.

So step 1 - get counseling.

Step 2 - get the WB.

I have given you all the info I can give you. I'm not a counselor, so go find one, and do yourself a favor.
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