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Herpetic Whitlow Diagnosis

Hello Doctor,
I have had a recurring infection for a year and a half on my finger.  It was MRSA at one point.  I've had antibiotics numerous times.  I finally connected the dots, and having a HSV-2 blood test come back positive, I had my finger tested, and yes, herpetic whitlow.

I suspect that I got it from manually stimulating a woman once with a very small cut on my finger.  The timing is right.  I can't be sure.  I don't think I have ever had a genital outbreak---certainly not one that is painful like my finger.  I've had what I thought are yeast infections, which they could have been given the strong antibiotics I was taking.

I've been told to not have sex during an outbreak, but that I would not need to wear gloves when fooling around sexually with someone (and using that hand).   Is this true?  

Could I infect my own genitals during masturbation?

I've also read that I may not have the infection at all in my genitals.
I am bisexual, and would love to not use a condom with my male partner.
He still needs to be tested.

I have started 1000 grams of valtrex.  I see improvement in my finger.

Thank you so much for your help.  I'm devastated by this.

Looking for help.
6 Responses
3149845 tn?1506627771
I am the community leader for this herpes group and have done extensive research on herpes and what i have advised it the real deal. This information came from doctors who used to be part of the expert questions forum that is now defunct.
3149845 tn?1506627771
Hi, well the good thing about whitlow is that it doesnot shed so its only contagious when a lesion is present. Since you have it in your hand ganglion you are basicly immune to passing to to another body part.
Whats important to remember is that it doesnot shed like oral or genital infection.
Avatar universal
I would love to know where you got your information.  There is so much conflicting information online.  And the nurse practitioner told me something different.  I just want to be sure.
Avatar universal
Thank you so much for this!  I will continue to research, but your answer gives me great hope!  So you really think I don't have any viral shedding genitally if I have whitlow?
Avatar universal
How was your finger actually tested? Where exactly are the sores and what do they look like?
Avatar universal
I was having an outbreak, and went in to have it tested.  The nurse practitioner cut open the blister and tested it.  I had to insist he do this.

I get the characteristic itching, tingling and redness at different locations on my right index finger only.  The blisters begin to swell and fill with liquid, mostly clear liquid.  The finger gets very tender.  Unfortunately, since I was diagnosed with MRSA last year in that same finger, I assumed each recurrence was MRSA.  MRSA infections need to be drained to get better.  So I was playing doctor at home and cutting the blisters open and draining them.  And that is exactly what you don't do with herpes blisters.  Luckily, I have been keeping them covered since MRSA is also something you don't want to be spreading.

During the past several outbreaks, I got a red line up my arm, swelling in my lymphnodes in my underarm, and where the redness is, it's very sore.  After what I've read, I think I'm pretty damn lucky I didn't get herpes encephalitis.  The virus seemed to be spreading up my arm and probably sooner or later throughout my body.

The valtrex has helped immensely, and for now, it is an ongoing suppressive prescription, not just for outbreaks.

I have never had those types of sores anywhere else on my body.
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