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Second IgG test done- Now HSV-1 and HSV-2 positive. Please help! I am freaked out.

Hi everyone,

I would love some input on the results, which are very unclear to me.

Here’s some background info:

I had a partner of 3 years, in which we broke up around February. I had a gut feeling he was cheating due to his weird/sketchy behaviors over the holidays, and our sex life was not how it used to be. When I confirmed he had been cheating, I took a full STD panel in early March, in which I tested positive for HSV-1, but had an equivocal for HSV-2. The last time me and him had sex was late December or early January?

I of course was freaked out because I couldn’t get a hard answer on my HSV result and thought a good 2-3 months was sufficient enough time to build antibodies (if I had them) and inform me whether I was positive or negative.
Fast forward to last Wednesday- I had my labs redrawn because I have been seeing someone for a month, and I also just wanted to get re-tested to see if my results have changed. I received the results yesterday, and it now says I’m positive for both. I’m completely devastated. I told my partner right away, and I’m not expecting him to stick around after this. I just feel so low, even though it wasn’t my fault and I meant no harm. I did inform him that I’ve never had any symptoms and that unfortunately, a lot of people have HSV and do not know. Millions of people are carriers. I also told him if he tests positive, it’s hard to say whether I or a previous partner gave it to him. It’s all speculation and a guessing game.

Unfortunately, the IgG test done at UCSF does not give you values- it only reads “pos” “neg” or “equivocal”. I don’t know why this lab doesn’t give values- isn’t that kind of important, as you could have a false positive depending on the number?

I’m really worried here, not only about myself but the person I’ve been seeing and what effect it’ll have on our relationship. I wanted to get testing done again, but was looking into the WB.

Do you guys think it is worthwhile to have this done since my IgG test does not give lab values? Or is the HSV-2 equivocal to positive a pretty clear indication that I am truly positive? I have a video visit with my PCP on the 8th to discuss my labs and see what she says. I feel like most doctors won’t consider the WB because of costs and difficulty of getting the kit, but I feel like it would put me at ease to have a definite answer.

Thank you everyone! And stay safe.

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Yes, definitely get another test to see the numbers. If you have to, pay for it yourself through STDCheck.com - https://www.stdcheck.com/herpes-2-test.php You need the number value.

This forum is full of people who have false positives with low values who end up negative. Any lab doing a test that doesn't give you a value now is negligent, or your doctor ordered the wrong test.

There is no such thing as a herpes carrier, at least in that you have it but it's dormant or anything. You could have it and have no symptoms, but still be shedding the virus and be contagious. Let's not worry about that yet, though. Let's figure out if you have it.

If your doctor can't order the test with a value attached, get it done at STDCheck. All you need is the hsv2 test, which is $65. That will tell us if you need to go further with a Western Blot or if you definitely have hsv2.

Don't panic. We'll get it figured out. It will take some time, though.

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Hi there!

Thank you so much for your reply. I’m literally sick to my stomach over this, along with dealing with an emergency crisis at home. As you can imagine, my stress level is at an all time high. No sleep, not really eating/drinking/exercising. Not to mention, my partner is very freaked out and concerned.

How long in between testing would you recommend I get this done? Maybe in another 2-4 weeks once my stress and anxiety calm down a bit?

Also, I’ve been told type-specific serologic testing looks for antibodies to HSV-1 and HSV-2 proteins. So sometimes, there is cross reactivity between HSV-1 proteins and HSV-2 proteins. But, there can also just be other proteins that would cause an antibody response. What causes this? And what kind of proteins trigger a response? I don’t know how accurate this is or if this is a common phenomenon. I am also HHV4 positive (mono), so I’m not sure if this can trigger a funky result? It’s been dormant in my body for years. I got this back in high school, so I’ve had it for a good 9-10 years with no symptoms.

Again, I appreciate your response. :)
Mono wouldn't cause it. If it were an IgM test, the hsv1 might cause it.

There are just some people who test with low positive numbers on the IgG, which is why experts think that anything under a 3.5 needs to be confirmed. There is a 50/50 chance, at least, that it's a false positive under 3.5, and the lower your number, the higher the chance. For example, if it's, 1.something, it's probably an 85% chance it's a false positive.

It's not something with you - it's the test and the guidelines.

I'm sorry you are going through so much right now. I would wait until you can manage the stress of this. It's been more than enough time since your last exposure from your ex, so the timing for the test is fine, clinically. It's just whenever you can handle it.

I'm also sorry your partner is freaking out. I realize it's a new relationship, and this can be a lot for a new relationship, but even if you have herpes, is his stress adding to your stress? That's something to keep in mind. Is this how he's going to respond later on when things get tough? You're getting a relationship test really early. Pay attention to how he responds. He has every right to decide what he can deal with and can't, but is he making you hurt more than you already do?

I think test whenever you're ready. On one hand, testing now could put this to bed. On the other, it could just continue the questions (very likely), and you'll need more testing. So consider that, and decide what you'll do, and when. There are no right or wrong answers here, especially if you have other big things happening.

Hi. Thank you for how you help people on this forum. Even as an IGG type-specific test, Terri has mentioned the HSV-1 might "dribble over" (her words), so it's not limited to the wildly inaccurate IGM test.

Why exactly do you say Mono wouldn't cause it? Are those proteins that much more distinct? I've seen Terri Warren and others write similar comments, but I've also consistently seen an inability for anyone to describe which "protein in the blood" trips up the blood tests on low HSV-2 (and some HSV-1) scores. It's actually quite puzzling why this is seemingly unexplained anywhere on the internet.

As for the OP (birdlover), while this is totally anecdotal, do you know if you've tested positive for any autoimmune antibodies? Someone like Terri Warren has written they've found no correlation to ANA antibodies and false positives, but have they specifically tested/studied for it? Unclear. Because of the hundreds of stories I've read on any number of forums, it seems curious many of the false positives also talk about Dermatitis or another autoimmune antibody that flares.

Even in speaking with the University of Washington Virology lab, I've been unable to read or be told how their Western Blot necessarily rules out this mysterious "protein in the blood" that trips up some people's false positives.
Well, it might dribble over, but there are loads of people here who have false positives on the hsv2 IgG who don't have hsv1, and some people just get low positives. Maybe that's it, maybe it isn't. In the end, I'm not sure it matters why so long as it gets cleared up.

Mono is not in the herpes simplex family, and for a lot of people, it's not a matter of something else tripping up the test so much as it is the testing guidelines needing to be adjusted. Most experts, including the CDC, think that anything under a 3.5 needs to be confirmed, so it could be that the ranges are just too low, and not that something is tripping it up. If I get a 1.2 instead of a 1.10, is that being tripped up, or is that a false positive because the range is set way too low?

No one ever gets a 0.0. I don't have a scientific explanation for that except that there is background noise to the test. If you are measuring sound in decibels in your house, even with the TV, music, and everything off, you'll still get some noise registering. That's how this test is. for a total lack of a better explanation.

I don't know that I'd read too much into an autoimmune link. Millions of people of dermatitis, which is really an umbrella term for all skin irritation/reactions, and it's not surprising that some who get false positives on herpes tests also have dermatitis.

It's really just an issue with the range being too low.

If you have your own questions, or want to delve into testing issues more, you should start your own thread so we don't hijack Bird_lover's, who's just trying to figure her own stuff out.
Hi there,

My PCP reached out and did recommend I retest. I asked her where the labs are performed unless everything is done inside UCSF, in which then I'd rather go to another lab if possible or just pay the $65 fee and do it myself through Lab Corp or Quest. I also told her I'd prefer to see my values and go from there to confirm. I haven't had a response yet, so I'm waiting back to see what she says. I just want to know what the numbers are. Say if I test positive for both, but my number is 2.5, I should do the WB? I'm assuming I can't assume I'm negative based off of that alone plus my equivocal HSV-2 test. Or, what if I test equivocal again? Would the same apply for taking the WB?

As for my partner, he was honest and said he was thrown off by the news and highly concerned (which of course I suspected; anyone would be concerned). I did try to reassure him and give him facts about this as much as I could, and he even did some research which I believe has helped. We both agree that there will be no sexual contact until things are ironed out and that we should not try to jump to conclusions. We'll have the talks when the results come back. He knows it is not my fault and said he greatly appreciates me telling him right off the bat with everything else going on in my life. He said it shows my true character and what kind of person I am. I never meant to harm, I'm just trying to be a responsible adult, even though I don't technically have to disclose my medical information. I like the guy, and if we are going to continue to see each other, I believe that transparency and communication is super important. If not, I understand. Everyone reacts differently to news like this and while this doesn't define me, it kinda does show what kind of person he is. Doesn't mean that the next person he's with won't have it and give it to him. The world is essentially a giant petri dish and we're all just living in it, lol

I did ask him if he's ever been tested for HSV- I know PCP's never include that in a standard STD panel. I only had it done because I was cheated on and my Doc wanted to cover all bases. Look at the panic and anxiety it creates! He said he's never been tested, so this adds more fuel to the fire and confusion. I told him if he were to test positive, he could've already had this and just didn't know. Doesn't mean he gave it to me, or I gave it to him. He could definitely retest, but I told him that'll create more panic on his end unless his values seem off and he really wants it redone. I on the other hand have a reason to be retested because of my first HSV panel coming back equivocal and this time its positive. He has nothing to really base it off of. He goes through Kaiser, and even his Doc said the test is known to throw false positives, so I'm sure hearing that also puts his mind at ease a bit.

As for the other person (Jack Berg), I do not have any autoimmune diseases. I have a rather extensive list of allergies, though. Nothing food related, all environmental or pets. I also have a pretty bad nickel allergy. I ended up in urgent care from it and it took a month to clear up.
@auntjessi, I tried to start my own thread, but didn't get a response. No big deal. I've found lots of information on other boards and medical studies. Didn't think my comment(s) in this thread were taking away from birdlover's thread mission. Specifically, since she/he asked this question: "And what kind of proteins trigger a response?"  

I'm curious about your dismissal of a *possible* autoimmune. It's well-established that there is a protein that creates the "noise" you referenced. Some autoimmune disorders revolve around proteins in your blood - some of which are studied to be similar to herpes. But, perhaps I'll start another thread on that - especially since Birdlover mentioned it's not relevant to his/her case.

F/u to my previous comment- I looked over my messages between me and the PCP who first tested me for HSV. She said there was no need to retest, as we already know that I have been exposed to Herpes, but they cannot say which form. She said nothing else can or needs to be done because I show no symptoms and that this exposure was given to me asymptomatically. How does that make sense when I tested positive for HSV-1 the first time back in March and again in August?

Doctors absolutely suck with herpes. They just do. To be fair, PCPs have to keep up with a lot of conditions, and STDs often get pushed to the side, but that's a hideous response.

"Say if I test positive for both, but my number is 2.5, I should do the WB? I'm assuming I can't assume I'm negative based off of that alone plus my equivocal HSV-2 test. Or, what if I test equivocal again? Would the same apply for taking the WB?"

"She said nothing else can or needs to be done because I show no symptoms and that this exposure was given to me asymptomatically."

None of this makes any sense to me. Is she trying to say that if you get it from someone who was asymptomatic, you will be asymptomatic? We know that's not true.

I think if you get anything below a 3.5, you should get it confirmed. Those are the guidelines now, set by the CDC.

Are you going to get the STDCheck test? I think that's a good 1st step, to at least get the qualitative result. If it's over 3.5, then you'll know you don't have to go further. If it's under, you can think about the Western Blot.

I hope your partner knows that even if he doesn't have herpes, and even if you do have hsv2, the chances of him getting it from you in the absence of symptoms are low.

Ghsv2 transmission, female to male, over the course of a year, assuming sex 2-3 times a week:

Only avoiding sex during an outbreak - 4-5%

Adding condoms OR daily suppression - 2-3%

Adding condoms AND daily suppression - 1-2%

I'm not suggesting that you call him with this info to beg him to stay, just that it's good info to have. I'm totally with you - this will show what kind of person he is.

Let me know what happens.
Hi auntiejessi,

I just got back from Lab Corp- I did order the HSV-2 blood test and it was actually $50! They were having a promotion, and I should be receiving my results in 1-3 days.

I definitely agree that doctors suck, and I work in healthcare! That's why I did not trust the first doctor I saw back in March for this test. Her answers just didn't seem right, and made no sense in my mind. But, I was told not to worry. It always kind of lingered in the back of my mind, but I had multiple people reassure me that the tests are wonky and that I'm most likely negative.

My PCP reached out to me this morning and confirmed that the test is "very unreliable in terms of false positives, so it may be in error". We are still going to follow up on the 8th, and discuss other options if need be. She didn't tell me why UCSF does not give lab values or how to obtain them, which is why I ordered the requisition for myself. I'll let you know what the results say!

My partner said he has researched and read a lot of info online, so he knows the information I've dumped onto him isn't false nor am I lying.  I've even told him about how transmission rates are pretty damn low, regardless of if I'm using condoms or antivirals. I'm glad I haven't shown any symptoms- I know they tend to pop up within a couple weeks, but for a lot of individuals it can pop up years after. Hoping that never happens (if I am positive).
Again, it's his choice whether or not to continue a relationship or just move on.  This is the first time me and him have had to deal with a situation like this, so it's definitely new and scary for the both of us. We'll definitely have to discuss more in depth once both of our results come back and go from there.
Well, yay for promotions! :)

The CDC doesn't recommend routine herpes blood testing for asymptomatic testing, and to be honest, I go back and forth on that. I think it's good for everyone to know their status, but in situations like this, and until we work through all the testing issues (and in 2020, it's shameful that we have testing issues, right?), I understand why they say that.

I'm glad you went ahead and got the test yourself. Even if it's a false positive, at least you'll know, and we know the next steps to take.

This can be a lot for any relationship, much less a new one (though really, it doesn't have to be). I hope it works out how you want it to. :)
Yeah, I told him the same thing about CDC’s guidelines. I mean, if his own doctor and my own doctor both say this test sucks in general, I feel like that should decrease the anxiety just a tad. Just goes to show that there needs to be some work done on improving the efficacy of the labs and refiguring lab values. Even the phlebotomist was shocked that 1. UCSF doesn’t use lab values and 2. The tests are crappy. (UCSF is ranked as one of the top hospitals- I believe they’re #8 nationally and #3 in CA). I would expect more precise testing from them, but that’s too much to ask for apparently, lol

Again for him, he’s NEVER had a herpes test, so this will be the first time he’ll know his status. I told him there’s no point in retesting over and over again- that’s just added stress! Plus values change all the time. Your number won’t be the same compared to a month from now. It may be eye opening for him, or a sigh of relief. I hope it’s a sigh of relief for the both of us.
No, no one needs to keep testing - that's inviting trouble. I hope his anxiety over this goes down even more.

I hope even more that you're doing okay with all of this. You're the one with wonky tests right now. Make sure you're taking care of you. Waiting can be the worst.
I’m doing my best to take care of myself along with other issues that have popped up recently. He’s also scheduled for surgery today, so that’s added stress for him.

I’m pretty sure the both of us will get our results by Wednesday and we’ll be able to talk then. Obviously it’s the worst time to have this incident happen, but that’s life. Crossing my fingers and hoping for the best no matter what!
Fingers crossed, and I hope his surgery goes well. :)
Aw thank you!

And yes, his surgery went well. He’s just obviously not feeling well, but he’ll be alright. Recovery is the suckiest part.

I’ll let you know what unfolds this week in terms of testing/results. Thank you again for all of your help! :)
Hi auntiejessi,

My results came back for the HSV test. Of course it says it is positive, but it’s low at a 1.32. The supplemental says “positive”. The reference range is .91-.1.09 for a positive test result.  

While I am not super thrilled, I am glad to know what my lab value is. I’ll pass this info along to my doctor as well.
Sorry, I meant .91-1.09 is considered equivocal!

I don’t know my lab value for the HSV 1, but that’s been positive both times I’ve had the test done at my PCP’s office.
Okay, so don't put a lot of stock into the supplemental test. I've seen people with positive supplemental tests end up negative on the Western Blot. Terri Warren has said she doesn't trust the supplemental test, and I agree with her.

The hsv1 doesn't have the same false positives that the hsv2 does.

I know you aren't thrilled with this, but I'm kinda happy about it, and it's really what I expected to happen.

A 1.32 gives you about an 85% chance that this is a false positive. I would suggest a Western Blot. Your doctor can order it, or you can go through Terri Warren and get it. If your insurance will cover it, go through your doctor. It's not cheap.

I know it's not the result you wanted, but it's a good step towards a negative final result. Unfortunately, it takes time to unwind this mess.

Hang in there!
Thank you so much for everything! Yeah, I kinda figured the supplemental wouldn’t be good to base your results on.

I’ll definitely discuss the Western Blot with her on the 8th. Not too sure if my insurance will cover it, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. She knows I’m interested in it though.

I honestly had a feeling my number would be rather low, and I’m glad I got that confirmed. Gives me some hope that I am HSV-2 negative.

So my partner got his results back- he’s negative! That’s a great weight lifted off of him I’m sure.

Still waiting to discuss options with my Doctor on Tuesday.
I went through all this recently as well. https://www.medhelp.org/posts/Herpes/How-reliable-are-positive-HSV2-supplemental-test-results/show/3056690

I had a test in February that was a low positive (1.95) with a negative supplemental test result and then a test in February with a 1.08 and a positive supplemental result. (My doctor called me after that one just to tell me that I tested positive and that "it's very common." I had to request the full test report, after which I started to doubt the positive, though damage had already been done to at least one relationship.) I got the University of Washington WB test, which came back after 4 weeks negative for HSV2 and, surprisingly enough, also for HSV1. I will never again trust screening test results.

I feel for you on this. It's not a pleasant feeling wondering about this. auntiejessi was a big help in my thinking clearly about all of it. I wish you the best of luck as you sort it all out.
Thanks for some insight! I’m hoping I do test negative, as everyone (including my PCP) has said this test is unreliable in general.

Still considering the WB, but I hope my insurance will cover it! If not, I’ll have to find a way to pay for it.

I would’ve thought for all of that money and overnight shipment that they’d process it earlier than 4 weeks! Is that really the turnaround time for this exam?!
They say in the package they send out that the turnaround time is 2-3 weeks. Mine came back in 4 weeks, but I'm guessing this is due to their covid work. They're probably swamped.

By the time my result came back, it was really no surprise to me. All of my partners in the past year since my last negative test at my annual exam had tested negative, and auntiejessi had pointed out that my results had gone down and not up in those few months, making a positive unlikely. There don't seem to be any studies that I can find online that graph out how likely a true positive is at the low antibody levels, but I searched through enough of the literature online to find that it looked like studies that found levels at those low numbers were almost always shown to be false positives. That definitely made me feel better. It didn't hurt that for the last week I was waiting, I was on a hiking and camping trip with my primary partner with little time to think about this. Distractions are great!
Unfortunately for me, my hospital/PCP didn’t provide me with lab values, so I can’t say whether or not my number went up or down compared to the recent test I took. I had a feeling it would be a low number, and it makes me feel better knowing that I’m way closer to a 1.1 than a 3.5+. I’m pretty sure I’m negative, but at the rate this year is going, I wouldn’t be surprised if I tested positive on the WB.

I’m glad my partner tested negative! He doesn’t need more stress, as he’s still recovering from surgery. The majority of the stress has been on me. I’m unfortunately dealing with multiple issues that have popped up within the past couple weeks and this just adds on to it. We’re just taking it day by day. I’m anxiously awaiting my appointment with my doctor on Tuesday, but I’m sure she’ll just recommend more testing, which isn’t needed. I need the WB, not another useless IgG test.

hey monkeydoctor - I'm so glad you posted here. You are one of the ones I was thinking about when I mentioned others with positive supplemental tests who came back negative.

I haven't ever found a chart either, but Terri Warren gives estimates for chances of being negative, and I use those. I'm pretty sure you're negative, too, Bird, and even with the way 2020 is going, I still believe that. (Though if it were me, I'd probably feel the same way you do - 2020 sucks for most everyone.)

Look at it this way - at 1.32, you really couldn't have gone up much, right? Even if you had gone up, it wouldn't be a significant jump, so it wouldn't mean anything. When we talk about jumps, or raises in the numbers, we are looking for things like a 1.5 to a 2.something or a 3.something or more. It would still be nice to know if you dropped - that would be clinically significant, but if you were positive at a 1.2 and went to a 1.32, it doesn't mean much. Does that make sense?

I'm glad your partner tested negative, too. I'm happy when anyone tests negative.

I'm sorry your insurance doesn't cover the WB. Maybe you can get another IgG to compare the numbers? It seems stupid, and IS stupid, but it might help? Or not. It's all frustrating, I know. :(

Can you appeal to your insurance company?
Hi auntiejessi,

I spoke with my PCP today and of course as expected, she said “if you’re positive, you’re positive and we don’t recommend anymore testing to be done. There’s not much else we can do unless you have an outbreak. We don’t recommend more testing because people’s sexual behaviors don’t change regardless of their status and also the fact that this test is known to cause false positives in the first place.”

I told her about the Western Blot and that I’m interested in it, so she asked that I send over the info about it to her and she’s going to reach out to virologists at UCSF and see what they say and what can be done. I told her she’d have to be the one to order the kit and sign off on it. Obviously she’s weary about it because of how it needs to be prepped and shipped, so I wouldn’t be surprised if she says no. In the end, it’s my money, so why does it matter?

I’m definitely going to reach out to my insurance and see if they’d cover the cost of the kit.

I have high hopes that I am negative, and I’m glad my partner is negative as well.

I dunno if I wanna spend another $50 on the test when I know it’ll be a low positive again. Even if it dropped a tiny bit, I still know that I have greater than an 85% chance that it’s negative. I don’t engage in any “risky” sexual encounters (I’ve had very few partners) and I do not hook up with strangers. I just want to wave the white flag and call it quits at this point. It’s very frustrating.

I’ll let you know what my PCP says! She says it’ll be about a week or so before she can get back to me.

If she will order the test, how does this whole shipping thing happen? I read that the kit comes with an ice pack and you’re supposed to bring it with you to the lab. But the lab isn’t the one that ships it out- we are responsible for that portion, right? It needs to be packed in between 3 layers and inside two boxes for insulation and protection. Does FedEx or UPS help you with this kind of stuff?

Okay, I'm going to go on a rant here. If doctors are doing STD testing, they are obligated to be current on them. It's not "if you're positive, you're positive".

From the CDC (which she should be adhering to if she is testing for STDs) -


From the STD Treatment Guidelines (like the bible of diagnosing and treating STDs) -

https://www.cdc.gov/std/tg2015/herpes.htm -

"The most commonly used test, HerpeSelect HSV-2 Elisa might be falsely positive at low index values (1.1–3.5) (334-336). Such low values should be confirmed with another test, such as Biokit or the Western blot (337). "

It's not even 1/4 of the way down the page.

And note that these are the 2015 Treatment Guidelines, so yes, we knew this 5 years ago. Your doctor should, too.

End rant.

I thought the WB came with what it needed. I haven't gotten one done - I had huge blisters on day 2 and my cultures were positive, and then my IgG was positive at 3 weeks, so there was no question in my case (my partner had it, so there wouldn't have been anyway).

Find out first if your insurance will cover it, and talk to your doctor. Email the links above to her, and go from there.

You wouldn't be unreasonable to call this negative and move on. I might. I think I suggested the same to monkeydoctor, too. It's a fair option.

We have been emailing back and forth before this appointment. She knows I'm interested in getting this done. Feel free to rant all you want! I already did with her, after she was 45 minutes late to my appointment. It's just amazing how some Doctors know very little. That's why I consider them educated guessers with a high salary. There's a difference between being a doctor and having MD slapped on the end of your name and actually living up to your title. The good ones would do anything they could to find multiple options, not just say "yeah you're positive so just move on in life, sorry".

She said she looked at the CDC's guidelines to see if anything has changed, yet for some reason she missed the facts about the confirmatory testing which I find funny. I told her about how I fall into the "low positive" range and that the CDC recommends I get a confirmatory test done, especially since my number is pretty damn close to a 1.09-1.1.

I sent her multiple links regarding the WB, so we'll see what comes out of it. I've heard about the Biokit- how accurate is this test compared to the WB? Say if she says no on the WB, would a Biokit be the best choice? I'm assuming this has to be ordered by a PCP as well. If I can do it on my own, I might be more apt to do that because I can't really rely on my Doctor to do so.

I'm honestly considering just chalking this all up to being negative. That's mainly if she doesn't agree to this test or even the Biokit. I'd just have to find a way to tell my partner about how I'm considered negative now after speaking with my PCP- he might want to see proof instead of word-of-mouth. I trusted him when he texted me and said all of his results came back clear, but I can't expect him to trust me on my word, and that's completely understandable.
I try to be fair with PCPs, that they have to keep up with so many different conditions, and now covid, but dammit, if they are go to diagnose and treat STDs, then they need to keep up with them. And it's not that hard. It's not a constantly changing field, and they can sign up for alerts with the CDC. They send out emails when things happen.

The BioKit isn't the gold standard that the WB is, but for you, it would be a good option. You aren't trying to figure out a positive culture and a negative blood test or anything. It's a good idea because like the WB, it's looking for something different than the IgG.

It's totally fair if you just chalk it up to being negative. If I were in your shoes, I might do the same. Getting the WB through Terri Warren is expensive, and if you don't have a few hundred extra dollars just laying around (haha), it can be really hard for a lot of people to get. This breaks the cost down - https://westoverheights.com/getting-a-herpes-western-blot/ By the time it's over, it could easily be $500. That's a lot of money for one test.

Also, I haven't read this page in awhile, but she mentions a new study that came out in 2020 that says that some people even over 3.5 who have no symptoms may have a false positive. That might help you with your decision.

I'm sorry you have to go through this.

I try to give people the benefit of the doubt, but it's hard. Some doctors are super helpful. Others, not so much. At least she reached out to Infectious Disease/Virology to discuss my labs. I also did tell her about the Biokit since its way easier and cheaper to get your hands on it. Maybe she'll be more apt to do that than the WB. I am not sitting on a mound of cash. I wish I was! Times are hard for everyone right now. The world is literally on fire- I woke up to a dark orange sky with ash falling. It's very dark out and eerie. It's like living on Mars. Even my animals are confused. What else can go wrong this year? Haha

I'll make my final decision by next week since that's the expected turnaround time for their department to get back to my PCP. This whole process sucks but life loves to test you in crappy ways. Just sign the requisition and take my blood! Simple!

A good friend of mine lives in SF, and texted me pics at noon your time, and it looked like midnight. Stay safe out there - it looks very scary.

I don't know many people who are sitting on a spare $500. I'm surely not. Take your time, and whatever decision you come to is right for you - there are no right or wrong answers here.

Just stay safe in the meantime! :)
Yeah, it ain't no joke out here! And what's worse is that the bums keep starting fires. There was a massive fire near me about 3 weeks ago. I'm sure your friend would know what I'm talking about. I literally get a notification everyday that there's a report of a fire somewhere here in the city. There's no end to any of this.

SF is honestly in the middle of it all- there's massive fires surrounding us. It's kinda similar to the 2019 fires. I feel like the smoke was worse back then though. Oddly enough, the air doesn't smell smoky, but I definitely saw ash falling in decent size pieces yesterday.

I'm doing what I can to stay safe. Unfortunately, I am outside and performing COIVD testing on patients (we're a free testing facility). I'm out there from 7a-6:15p. Luckily I don't work today. I'm hoping things look a little better when I have to come back in on Friday.

Thank you again for all of your help! I'll report back and let you know what happens with UCSF and my tests.
Hi auntiejessi,

My PCP contacted me today, and this is what she said:

“I spoke to the Infectious Disease team, who agreed that the HSV testing can have a false positive rate that is higher than others. She agrees with what we discussed in our visit, that a Western blot is considered the most definitive, though she also confirms that it is not standard clinical practice to pursue the Western blot given your results. She was able to see all your records and labs tests as well.

I would recommend to hold off on additional testing now, which is supported by her expert opinion. I did ask her to take a look at the links you sent, and will let you know if she says anything different. For now, I know it is unsettling, but I would presume you do have it and continue to use condoms, inform your partners, and let me know of any lesion or ulceration you might have for future outbreaks. My hope is you never get one, but if you do, we can absolutely get medications for you.”

Again, no one is wanting to help me here, not even offer a Biokit! This is insane. So I guess at this point, I should really consider this negative and move on with my life.
Oh my god, I am so sorry.

This is so bad, on several levels.

First, it is standard clinical practice, per the CDC.

Second, if you had it, which she thinks you do, to wait for another outbreak to give you meds and not offer you suppression for preventing transmission is terrible.

Thirdly, what's the most "unsettling" is her not following CDC guidelines.

I'd find a new doctor, at least for your reproductive health care.

I agree with you about considering this negative and moving on. If you ever feel like you want to get a Western Blot, you can do that on your own with Terri Warren, but I think it's perfectly reasonable to accept this as a false positive and move forward. I'd tell you if I thought otherwise.

I wish you the best of luck, and if you ever need anything, we're here. Stay safe out there.
Thank you so much for everything!

I will definitely look for a GYN. I just fear that I'll be thrown through the same loop, or she may deny me a referral to a GYN since she also deals with GYN issues. I also have PCOS, and my PCP didn't want to refer me to their specialized clinic because I don't show symptoms. OK, that's all well and good, but there is NO cure for PCOS and I need to be seen by a specialist. My ultrasound pretty much shows you I have PCOS. What I have on my ovaries isn't entirely normal compared to most women, but what do I know?!
I've been kinda on my own here, and the responses I've been getting from doctors at this "top ranked" hospital are pretty crappy.

The NP who I happened to work with yesterday said her statements make no sense and that if a patient is requesting confirmatory testing that it should be done, and that she's shocked that this is coming from an institution like this. She feels bad for me too.

I'm quite disappointed in the healthcare system in general, but I have never been treated like this by any doctor. It's very sad that we pay for their "services" only to get nothing in return but frustration and no help.

I feel you. I'm going through some health stuff right now, and I am beyond over doctors right now. It shouldn't be this hard to get decent health care. Women seem to get the brunt of it. And really - this is herpes. It's not rocket science, and shouldn't be this difficult.

I know very little about it, but a friend works for One Medical  - he does engineering for the website, and has nothing to do with the practice part, so I'm not pushing it or advocating for it, just suggesting it as an option. It seems like a different way of practicing medicine, and it looks like it's covered by some insurances - https://www.onemedical.com/ It might be an option for you in SF.

And I agree with you about the PCOS - just because you don't have symptoms doesn't mean you don't need to be monitored by a doctor. We have a PCOS forum if you're ever in need of that - https://www.medhelp.org/forums/Polycystic-Ovarian-Syndrome-PCOS/show/203

I'm sorry you are going through this. If we can help, let us know.

I honestly think it's the paperwork that's involved with ordering tests and stuff. In all honesty though, she doesn't need to go through my insurance- she literally has to download and print the requisition, fill it out, and send it so I can get the kit. I don't understand what the problem is and why they advise against it.

What also threw me off was the fact that she brought up the IgM test, which I know is frowned upon and not recommended by the CDC. She said that was for obvious lesions, which I don't have and have never had. I just can't trust anyone.

I do know a little about One Medical- unfortunately, they don't take my insurance. If I can be placed into a permanent FT position with my new job, I'd definitely consider signing up with their benefits they offer, since they offer UHC and Kaiser. I've also been looking for other job opportunities but it's been rough out here.

Thanks for letting me know about the PCOS board! I'll look around and see what gets posted over there. I'm extremely grateful that my symptoms haven't popped back up, but I still prefer seeing a specialist and even wanted to see a nutritionist. It's just crazy that a doctor would deny you services like that. Funny how they're so ready and willing to throw drugs at you and send you on your way but won't order a simple test or referral.  I can't stand this healthcare system.
Wow. The IgM has nothing to do with lesions. It's a blood test that is designed to look for new infections - it looks for an antibody that is present for the first few weeks after you're infected, whether you have lesions or not. The issue with it is that it's wrong so often, can be tripped up be a recurrence years later, and just sucks. My own was negative when it should have positive, and positive when it should have been negative.

For obvious lesions, there are cultures and PCR swabs. A PCR swab can be done on not-so-obvious lesions, too, since it's super sensitive. A regular culture isn't nearly as sensitive.

She is really, really bad at this.

I'm sorry you have had to deal with this, all while dealing with what sounds like job insecurity and being on the frontlines of Covid, and fires, and everything else.

Hang in there, okay?
Yeah, I thought it was weird that she'd mention that test, especially if she said she "reviewed" the guidelines from the CDC. I know this test is not the best and isn't used for lesions, so it kinda threw me off when she mentioned that.

I spoke to my therapist today and he was wondering if a women's clinic/Planned Parenthood would offer better services, such as a Biokit if I were to request it. Do you know if they do this at all, or do they just offer the basic STD screening? Seems like they'd be more keen on helping me out rather than my own doctor who I can't trust. Everyone has agreed that this is a terrible doctor!

I hope you stay safe as well- I've been in contact with only one confirmed case of COVID. Not sure if I've encountered anyone else so far, but I know that I'm negative at least. Luckily I'm not too anxious or scared, even though I'm at one of the largest testing sites here! I'm going to speak to my boss when I see her and see if she can add me on for another day at least. That'll help a bit for the time being.
I don't think Planned Parenthoods do BioKits, but it wouldn't hurt to call and ask if they can arrange it. Some PPs are better than others, and you may get lucky. It's shameful that herpes is so hard to diagnose properly when it's so common. If they were all following the CDC's guidelines, it wouldn't be this hard.

Thanks for the well wishes! I'm in Florida, so I know the COVID stuff well lol. We have a totally different kind of governor than you do, so it's probably been a very different experience. (Politics aren't allowed on this site, so I'll leave it at that.) I hope you get all the work you want, and stay safe! Keep me posted if you find any testing or a new doctor. Good luck! :)

Hi auntiejessi,

Hope all is well! I think I do want to have confirmatory testing done. There’s still some uncertainty, which is putting a strain in my relationship. The only problem is that not only is my PCP terrible, I have read on Terri Warren’s website that Lab Corp and Quest do not draw/spin blood for the WB. I’d have to go through Any Lab Test Now, which is not offered in my area. I’m kinda at a loss here. I’m not sure if any other  “outside” labs would do this test for me. I don’t even know of any of those labs here, as all we have are hospitals, free clinics and of course Lab Corp and Quest.

I’d also be ok with a Biokit, but I’m not sure of how I’d go about finding out who offers that type of test in my area. This seems like the most attainable test for me.

I did find this test kit, which looks like the Biokit but obviously it’s a different manufacturer. Any thoughts on this?

Any advice on what to do now? Or should I try my luck with a different Doctor at this point and see what happens?

Thanks again for all of your help!
I'm sorry this is putting a strain on your relationship.

The rapid test says IgG on the box in the image, so it's the same test that you have already had done.

I mean, you're in SF. You can't be the only one in SF that has needed a WB, nor the first one that Terri has worked with. She says on the WB page, "In addition to anylabtestnow, I am aware of additional labs in some cities that will draw and spin down your blood sample for you."  (I don't mean to sound frustrated with you - it's just staggering that you are in one of the biggest, most progressive cities in the country and this is such a struggle.)

I think $20 to post on Terri's forum asking if she has labs in SF is better than spending $29 on another IgG. You could also try another doctor, and see if they'll order a BioKit. Do you know of any good gynos or primaries? Maybe your friends have really good docs they like?

I'm so sorry you are going through all this. It just shouldn't be this hard. :(

I reached out to another doctor (the first one who tested me for it) and I’m going to speak with her in person hopefully and go from there. If she won’t do the Biokit or the WB, I’ll go through Terri.

I’ve been looking at mobile phlebotomists, so I’m gonna contact one and see if they’ll draw and ship for a WB IF this doctor agrees on testing me. The mobile phlebotomist Terri recommended isn’t taking new patients due to COVID...hopefully the other one I found is taking patients and will do this test.

Ugh, it’s all been frustrating. While my partner does believe me (I told him my low positive number and all of the facts), he would still feel comfortable with me having another test. Even I would love to put this all behind me, as I told him this is very likely to be a negative. I had to explain to him that there was no point in doing another IgG.I highly doubt my number would drop that low to the point of it being negative. I’d be really surprised and skeptical if that were to happen.

I’ll update you again! I hope all is well.
Part of me understands where your partner is coming from, and part of me just wants to kinda shake him. He's asking you to do a lot for a virus that, at best, he has a 95-96% chance of NOT getting (if you do have it) over the course of a year if all you do is avoid sex while you have an outbreak, and chances are so, so low that you have it.

Definitely keep me posted. Here in Florida everything's chaos - we've solved the pandemic, you know. -eye roll-

Take care of you!

I’m in the same boat, LOL Like I told him that I’m low risk and that his chances are VERY low. Yet, he’s stubborn and likes to see the research, numbers, etc. I told him I’ll see what I can do, but honestly if he can’t handle this then move on...I really don’t have anything else for him. I’ve done what I could and given him the materials to learn about this stuff.

We’re currently dying out here- it’s 93 and there’s 2 fires up north, so the smoke has come back. Luckily our cases aren’t too bad- they’re still increasing but not as much as any other state. I still don’t think it’s smart to reopen things again, but it’s not my choice in the end.
Is he doing any research? Has he posted anywhere? Asked Terri Warren? I don't remember answering questions from someone in his situation here.

This is a relationship, and it's not all up to you to do this. If he wants info, it's out there and he can find it, too.

Yuck - 93 and you probably don't have AC? It's actually hotter there today than in Florida. :(

Stay safe!
Nope, he hasn’t asked any questions. Only read stuff online along with me giving him facts.

My therapist said this is our issue to tackle, not just mine and that this is something that can easily be handled if both parties are open and can work with one another, especially if we are being intimate. Since he would feel better about more testing, I also think it would be fair if he helped pay for it. If he’s serious about continuing a relationship, I find it somewhat fair if he chipped in a little bit for this test. I’m not expecting him to foot the entire bill, but come on...ya gotta work with me here.

And you are correct! No AC here, so you can imagine my place being very warm. I work in full PPE, and I was sweating through my suit! We even had coworkers leave early because they weren’t feeling well. The weather here is very odd- right now it’s 70 but windy, which is typical weather where I live. We are not acclimated to hot weather- we’ll drop like flies lol
I was wondering about if he's helping pay, but finances aren't my business, so I didn't ask. If you're okay with moving on as if this is a false positive - which, clinically, is a fair assumption - and he wants more testing, I think it's fair to ask him to chip in.

You're still being intimate while he's questioning this? That has to play with your mind some.

I've been to SF many times - the wind is fierce. I was only there once during a heat wave - we had to buy different clothes because we brought clothes for much cooler weather. I can't imagine having heat like we have here and being in full PPE. No wonder people weren't feeling well. I'm glad it's cooled down. (This conversation is making me really want to go to SF, but I'll wait until the pandemic is over lol.)

Hang in there. I'm happy your in therapy. No matter why you started it, which isn't my business, I'm glad you have it during this, because herpes testing can really mess with your head.
I’m OK with moving on, but I know in the back of his mind, he can’t put this behind him. I can’t fault him for that. But yeah, next time we talk, I’ll ask him if he can chip in. It’s only fair! He’s more comfortable financially than I am.

And yes, we have been intimate- so I find it funny that it was brought up again...my therapist says there’s a high possibility that he’ll move on from this, and that these are just passing thoughts.  He just needs to know when to not bring the topic up, especially since there’s nothing else for me to say. I wish I could snap my fingers and make the results change, but I can’t. I’m literally a sitting duck and hoping this next doctor will help me out.

Not much to do in SF right now- we are reopening dining services and malls at 25% capacity and nail shops/salons are open too. I mean, I’m sure it would be cheap to visit the city right now and it’s actually cooled down. No heat wave anymore! Fires are still burning though...kinda hazy right now. I can smell the smoke yet our AQI is normal. I’ve never really had the chance to travel, mainly because of school/work and finances. I do want to go out of the country, but now isn’t the time since we aren’t allowed pretty much anywhere lol

The therapy definitely helps! I did it for multiple reasons- this whole HSV thing popped up after I joined therapy. It’s nice having someone look from the outside in. Trying to utilize what’s been advised for me to do in my relationships moving forward. It’s a challenge but it has to be done.
You really are the one who is stuck, mostly - you can't change the test results you have, you can get a WB, but only if you can afford it and can find a lab in SF. You can't make your partner accept the results as almost definitely a false positive, and you can't make him stop thinking about it. You can't make your doctor reasonable.

You can decide when it's too much of an issue for you if he keeps bringing it up, and you'll know if/when it gets to that point, but in the meantime,  maneuvering this can't be easy.

I've been to SF for work, which was a great way to see the city and not pay for it lol. Right now, both you and I are probably not invited anywhere, being from Florida and Cali lol.

Hang in there! You have so much going on right now, so make sure you are doing things for yourself. Self-care is no joke. :)
Unfortunately, I can’t do any of that. While they do believe me and the fact that this is very certain a false positive, they just wanna see the numbers/result to prove it. Makes sense, but still this puts strain on me a bit and our relationship as a whole. If I could sign the requisition myself and draw my own blood, I would. I’m not an MD, but I could definitely poke myself and get some blood, no problem. This whole situation isn’t the best to be in, but that’s life. I’m hoping someone hears me out and will help me. Bet if they were in the same position they’d want confirmatory testing too...

We both have busy schedules, more so him than I, since I can work 3-4 days a week and still be full time. We’ll have to find some time to sit and figure out expenses and what can be done. This is an investment and if it’ll bring peace of mind to the both of us, cool.

I’m trying to hang in there- honestly something always pops up at the last minute that I need to take care of, so I’m constantly juggling stuff. I just need a break! And even if I get this test approved, it’s gonna be 3-4 weeks before I see results. I’ve mentioned this before, so I hope he’s ok with waiting it out that long. If not, move on. 2020 can’t get any worse...I hope.
I'm just really sorry this is so hard. I used to think it sucked that I had such a horrible primary outbreak, and while it did, I tested so clearly positive on a culture and on the IgG very early. I never had to go through any of this. Waiting weeks and weeks and spending hundreds (or more) is worse than anything I went through. At least I could start dealing with it right away.

Stay safe out there, and I'm sending hugs.
Oh and 2020 definitely sucks. Let's hope it doesn't get any worse...
It’s all good, I’m sure if the world literally wasn’t on fire right now, it would be way easier to access services that I need to get this out of the way. But we all know that’s not how life works lol

I did reach out to a mobile phlebotomy service here in the Bay Area, so I’m hoping they do draw, spin and ship for the WB. I have a video visit scheduled on the 8th with a different MD, so hopefully she’ll hear me out and perhaps sign the requisition for this test. That’ll save me $80+ for the visit from Terri. I literally just paid rent, my CC bill and a vet bill, so there went my entire paycheck. If I can save money somehow and avoid an extra $80 charge, I will.

How early did you test for HSV? And how long after did you experience symptoms? While it’s not fun waking up one day and being in an excruciating amount of pain and discomfort, at least you are able to tackle it head on and keep the transmission rate super low. I hope it doesn’t affect your relationships either. I read about so many people who are scared to disclose or are depressed because they are immediately shut down by their potential partners. It’s disheartening to hear.

I unfortunately don’t have any clear indication of HSV. If I did, it would kind of be a blessing instead of playing this game I’ve been playing for months here.

I literally woke up to an orange haze. It’s pretty gross out. The sun is a bright red/orange, and the fires are barely contained. I think it’s only 3% contained as of yesterday? I still see people out and about though, especially since indoor and outdoor dining is permitted. Nothing like a little Napa fire ash in my salad.
My boyfriend at the time had herpes. I knew he had it, and we'd been together for several years. He caught himself in his zipper one day, and a couple of days later, we were intimate. I saw the sore, and asked him, and he mentioned the zipper incident, as we started calling it. I remembered it - I saw the blood after, and we were laughing, because dude, a zipper accident as an adult?

I think 2 or 3 days later, I woke up with crazy pain and blisters, and knew immediately what it was. I called my doctor, and pushed to get in that day for testing. The big irony? I was working at an STD clinic that day, and we had a presentation from the Valtrex people about their big new study about shedding and transmission, etc. I sat through that and then left to go get tested.

The best we can figure is that the zipper sore triggered an outbreak, and we couldn't tell that it was both a zipper injury and an outbreak, or it triggered shedding, and that's how I got it.

My IgM - which we didn't know sucked so bad then - was negative when it should have been positive, and positive when it should have been negative, but my IgG was positive at about 3 weeks. At the time, we didn't know about false positives, so I never asked for a number, and I had the positive culture, so it wasn't a concern for me.

I never got really depressed over it, it hasn't caused any big issues for me. It hasn't affected my relationships at all, though I guess it's maybe affected my dating, because it's a good filter, surprisingly.

Only one guy I've ever told has had concerns about it, but he also thought you could get "the AIDS" from a toilet seat, and I decided I didn't have enough time to educate someone that much. I sent him a link to Planned Parenthood for STD education, and said no, but thanks.

Maybe 3 or 4 have told me they also have it, which bugs me because they only told me AFTER I told them. One admitted he probably wouldn't have told me, which ended that immediately lol. (I have not slept with most of these men - they were all just men I went on dates with a few times, and it was getting close enough to where it might happen. I have nothing against casual sex if it works for you. It just doesn't work for me.)

A few have told me that they have dated other women with it, so no big deal. One guy said, "Yeah, you're like the third woman who's had that. I'm hungry. Can we get pizza?"

After my ex and I broke up, I had a SPEECH. I had all the transmission rates, and stats, and everything, all ready. I had links on note cards to give them if they wanted, the whole thing. Maybe the 3rd guy I told, he said, "yeah, I know about it. I'm cool." And I was stumped, like I had a speech to give. And he laughed and said, "Wanna give me your speech? I'll listen." So now I just let them ask what they want to ask and answer their questions.

So many things affects relationships - money, families, trust, illness, jobs, kids, chores, etc., etc., that herpes is usually way, way down the list if it's even on it. Now pandemics and quarantine and homeschooling (if you have kids) are on the list, too.

I'm sorry it's not easier for you. I wish you had a clear answer, and it wouldn't cost so much to get one. I hope the new MD helps.

Enjoy the ash in your salad, I guess? Just stay safe!

Ouch, I'm sorry! Weird things happen like that, it's even happened to my ex but he caught it before it got worse with the whole zipper. It was a small pinch but it sure woke him up, lol Luckily he didn't really bleed or end up with a sore from what I recall. I would've pointed it out, and he would've asked me about it at least. Dude never went to the Doctor and it was like pulling teeth to get him to go.

I remember reading how stress, diet, environment, etc can trigger an OB- I wonder if that also contributed to his sore which passed it on to you? Even with all of the stress and crappy living environment I've been dealing with, I haven't had any OB. While I wouldn't wish it upon anyone, at least it's a clear indication that you have something.

I'm glad it hasn't affected your personal relationships! This is a first for me, and while I've become ok with it all, some people can't, and I have to accept that. I don't do casual sex either, but either way I feel it's important to disclose. The men who didn't tell you up front are probably scared because of the stigma surrounding it. Maybe they've been rejected a few times. Either way, you have to be an adult about stuff like this. It's a very good thing you didn't sleep with them, lol Makes you think what else could they be hiding? Even worse when they admit they wouldn't have disclosed until you mentioned your status. Big no-no.

I have no kids currently, just my animals. One of which was severely ill, which is why I've been stressed out with bills. $3k on a small parrot plus my other bills that need to be handled? Yeah, I feel like I'm drowning sometimes!

I did receive a response from a bay area phlebotomy company who will drive to my house or business and draw my blood. I asked if they do draw and ship for the WB, and they said they provide this service. I emailed them back about the costs and how they handle this sort of test, so hopefully I get an answer back from them before the 8th. I know the blood draw and shipping won't be cheap. I'm gonna ballpark it at about $160? If I can get this MD on board with the requisition, then I'll just get the test done. If she's on board, then I'll reach out to my insurance and see if I can be reimbursed for the phlebotomy service.  I may have some luck on my side :) 2020 needs to give me something good out of this entire year, lol

As for the ash, I'm good on that haha. I haven't eaten out at restaurants even with the new policy. I'd rather cook at home or have food delivered. I'm a little sensitive to the smoke, so my chest gets tight from being out there for extended periods (which sucks because I'm literally outside all day in full PPE). I've also taken up running, and the smoke is a hinderance for me. I'm already dying from running, but now I have to worry about breathing in that stuff while running. I like running at night, but even last night the AQI was 160. Running is off the table for another couple days I guess. I'm sure my body is ok with that though.
In theory, diet can trigger people, but I've never met anyone actually triggered by that. Stress definitely can, like any other illness, and anything that puts stress on your body. A big one for me is other illness - if I get strep, the flu, bronchitis, a sinus infection, etc., I will likely get an outbreak. If my sleep gets messed up for a few days, I probably will.

I mean, you probably haven't gotten an outbreak because you probably don't have herpes. Just saying. :)

Yeah, I understand that some are worried about rejection, and that's fair, but someone's fear of rejection isn't more important than someone else's ability to make an informed choice about their body. Others disagree with that, and say with the low chance of transmission, telling isn't important, but I disagree. If the risk gets to zero, we can talk about not disclosing.

Oh I'm glad that they'll draw for the WB. That's encouraging! I'm impressed that you are still working on this. I might have said F it, and just moved on.

I haven't eaten out, either, though we've been open partially for awhile, and now we're fully open. I can't see that happening any time soon. You started running now? In the heat wave and fires? You're a tough one, huh? Good for you. :)

Hang in there and have a good weekend. Try to do something fun (and safe, of course) just for you.
Oh and I hope your parrot is going to be okay. :)
Thank you! :) Yeah, he's doing ok finally- took him in for his last x-ray yesterday and there's a drastic improvement from about a month ago. He's back to his usual self.

Makes sense that another illness would trigger it- even when I do get sick (which is rare), I still haven't had any OB. My ex never had cold sores or lesions either, even when he was sick or under a lot of stress. Do you happen to know off the top of your head how often a low positive is truly a positive with the WB? Guess I shouldn't worry too much about it now, as I still need to get someone to sign the paperwork for it. I totally agree that no matter what, a person who is really positive needs to disclose, even if you have the chance of rejection. I mean I disclosed, knowing and understanding that he may not handle this too well. I'd feel terrible not doing that, even if my medical history is no one's business but my own. Have you heard about the clinical trials about how researchers are on their way to finding a "cure" for herpes? It doesn't eradicate the virus, but puts it to sleep. Apparently you wouldn't have a risk of transmission anymore, from what I recall.

Honestly, I'm perfectly fine with considering this negative, but my partner isn't entirely comfortable.  If he truly thinks I'm such a great person, he better step it up. I don't have the time and energy to really be dealing with his uncertainty.  2020 has taken a toll on everyone, and the last thing I want to deal with is another failed relationship because of someone who can't let this go. But hey, men are like buses- they come around every few minutes LOL

I found out the pricing for the blood draw- it's only $125! That's not that bad, considering the other place Terri recommended had the initial blood draw at $99, and I'm not sure how much processing/shipping the WB would be for them.

Yeah I know out in FL you guys have had stuff open for awhile. I dunno how you're handling it out there- I feel like almost everyone is infected over there and the lucky few are the smart ones who are taking the right precautions. I see videos of college kids throwing parties at their sorority, knowing and admitting that they're positive for COVID...yikes.

As for running, I kept it up for a week! I've been running about 1.5 miles a day, but I took yesterday and today off. I think I pulled a muscle because I haven't exercised in months. Plus the smoke is really bad today, so I don't want to run in conditions like that. I found an app - C25K, which will get you to running 5k in 8 weeks. You do periods of running and jogging, which each interval increasing as the weeks go by. I think that's more manageable for me rather that how I did it originally by just jumping in and dying at the same time lol. I can run a 9 minute mile, sometimes 10. It's not great, but it's not bad. Either way, once I commit to something I stick to it till the end! Running has honestly improved my mood, and even my partner has noticed my energy and mood levels are better. :) Do I fully enjoy it? No, but I prefer it to being inside the gym. My gym has reopened, but I see no precautions they are taking. I could literally just show up, no reservation required. I don't really trust that, so I took an alternative approach and decided to start running outside.

I hope all is well on your end! I know you said you were dealing with a medical issue, so hopefully your situation has changed a bit!
Well- update for ya!

No need for that test. Let’s just say this person needs to grow up and be a man. He pretty much had multiple excuses and said if it were him, he’d push for more testing. Well, I was pushing for more testing, but I guess I have no need anymore.
Awww well, I'm sorry. I know you liked him, and I'm sorry he didn't step up when you needed him to.

At a 1.32, you have at least an 85% chance of this being a false positive. The supplemental tests - I don't know what to make of them yet. They are new, and those results for people have been all over the place, and seem to have no bearing on the WB results. I've not seen anyone with a positive supplemental test positive on a WB, nor has Terri Warren. I'd have to go back and check, but I think monkeydoctor (who posted earlier in your thread) had a positive supplemental and had a negative WB.

I can't make decisions for you, but if I had a 1.32 on an IgG, and no symptoms, I'd be comfortable accepting it as a false positive. Your comfort level may be different, and that wouldn't be a wrong choice.

I understand that he might want you to push for more testing, but it's ultimately up to you, and that's expensive. And if he wasn't totally comfortable, he shouldn't have been continuing to be intimate with you.

In any case, I hope you're okay with everything.

My medical issue is cardiac stuff. It's not serious, just annoying, and the testing part of it is even more annoying. (Can you tell I'm annoyed?) I have an issue where I research everything, and want to skip to the end, or do all the testing at once, and it annoys me when it goes one thing at a time, when it doesn't really need to. I've had these issues for a long time, and suddenly they're worse, and I've been trying for months to find out why. Doing it in the middle of a pandemic doesn't make it easier.

I did the C25K a while ago. It's good, and it actually works. I despise running, and if it was able to get me running, it works.

I wish you the best. If you decide to ever do the testing, we're here. If you decide not to, that's a fair decision.
Honestly I'm more irritated than upset about this ending. It was only a couple months, and I was always ambivalent about the whole thing because of the way I was being treated. I feel like most people (when they say they like me) would actually show some emotion and make me feel like I'm wanted. This one couldn't do that, nor are they man enough to deal with adult situations. They acted like everything that has happened was "too much" for them, when in reality I was the one handling it all. It was my health, my animal, my finances- not his. I knew he was uncomfortable, yet he couldn't man up and say that it wasn't going to work. Welcome to adulthood and the situations people face when dating or in a relationship! If you can't handle a bump or two in the road, you don't deserve to be dating anyone until you work on yourself.

Honestly, I'm perfectly OK with moving on, but at the same time I feel so compelled to get this test done just to throw it back in his face, just to show him that I'm not "tainted" and that he's basically an idiot lol His response totally changed when I asked him to chip in for the test, and that's when I knew it was time to walk out. I was only around for his convenience and more so as a friend.

I'm doing ok with everything! Just moving on in life as anyone else would. Can't dwell on this. Funny thing is, I happened to check my other bank account and found that I was deposited about $800 in back-payment, so that's definitely helpful. So, I could definitely test if I wanted to and if the MD says yes to it. I also have a friend who was willing to pay for it just to give me peace of mind. I of course would pay them back, but it's a very kind gesture, especially from someone I just recently met. I'm still going to speak with the MD just to see if she has any insight to this compared to the other lady I saw who just completely brushed this off as a true positive. If both deny me, then I'll take it as a sign to just stop. I can't have this weigh on my mind.

I'm like you in the sense where I like to research everything, ask questions, and want all of the necessary testing done. I hate having to jump through hoops and sometimes jump from MD to MD to get what I need. COVID definitely makes it harder to get everything done, so I can relate to you in that sense. I just want everything done in one swoop instead of dragging it out longer than it needs to be. It just makes me more annoyed and anxious.

I hope the rest of the year works out for you! We've got three months to go. I'll definitely let you know what happens in the coming weeks! Thank you again for all of the help and support!
As you've no doubt figured out, "They acted like everything that has happened was "too much" for them" is a red flag. What you were dealing with was a lot, but in the big scheme of it all, it was just a lot at once (with the exception of your bird, which is a family member). But imagine down the road, with a sick kid, maybe getting laid off from a job, a sick parent, car problems, etc., etc. all at the same time. If these few things can stress him out and it's "too much", good luck later.

After all this, I can understand you wanting to test. I would probably feel the same way about wanting to prove it to everyone. That's a normal reaction. Definitely keep me posted.

Three months - I hope yours goes smoothly, and stay blessed. You have wonderful friends, and stay safe! :)

Exactly! I could tell this person was becoming very distant and cold towards me, yet still wanted to remain friends. Yeah, that bridge is burned, especially after what happened a couple days ago. I will not accept lame excuses and idiotic behavior like this in my life. I pretty much told him to be a man and grow up- life happens, what can I say? If he can’t handle this, then best of luck in any relationship. Just hope he keeps in mind that no matter what, the next person may have HSV and not even know or maybe won’t even disclose.

I’ll definitely let you know whether or not I get testing done! It’ll be a slap in the face for him, and an “I told you so”. Only reason why he turned so cold was because of the HSV result, even though he wouldn’t entirely admit it. Oh well, life moves on, and I hope he realizes how stupid it was to do this.

Stay safe out in FL! :)
So, quick update- I spoke to my other MD this morning, and she was willing to fill out the requisition for the WB. I sent her the link with the forms attached, so I hope to hear back from her in a few days.

I'm glad someone was willing to at least listen to my concerns for once. Only sucky part is that this shouldn't have taken 2+ months of my time and stress.
Ohhh YAY! I'm sorry it took so long, but at least it's happening.

It does suck that it took so much time and stress. I'm trying to think of a bright side, but can't just yet.

OH - without that time and waiting, you wouldn't have seen the side of your partner that this allowed you to see, or at least not this quickly. That sucks, too, but better now than later when you are more invested and it's something far more serious than a likely false positive on a herpes test.

Keep me posted. :)

Definitely agree! He ain’t worth my time  and effort. I’m glad I saw all the red flags rather early, and it wasn’t a few more months of this crap. I know that regardless, I’ll still be able to date and find someone; I just happen to have my first encounter with someone who couldn’t wrap their head around it and tried to blame me because I didn’t “push” for more testing. Again, his whole attitude changed when he found out about my status and when I told him it would be fair if he helps pay for some of it. Even the phlebotomist visit would’ve been ok with me if it would’ve given him peace of mind.

I’ll definitely update you- I’m assuming my MD will reach out sometime next week.

Have a great weekend!
I haven't logged in here for a bit, so I'm just catching up. Auntiejessie mentioned earlier that I had a positive secondary test but a negative WB, which is correct. I had a test that was something like 1.85 or 1.95 in February with a negative secondary test, so I moved on with that as a negative, but when my June test came back with a 1.08 and a positive secondary, at first the only thing I got from my doctor was a call saying that I had tested positive for HSV2. I had to request the test results and wait a week to even see that 1.08 and start to wonder about the result, by which time I had told all of my partners (I'm polyamorous so in several long-term relationships) that I had HSV2. Ugh!

Just so you know, the WB results took 4 weeks to come back. I think they are likely overwhelmed with covid testing at the moment. Don't count on a quick response.

My gynecologists' office (where I had the June test and the blood draw for the WB) actually told me when they called with the WB results to come back in a few months to rule out a recent infection due to the "conflicting results." I wanted to scream. These were not really conflicting results (as a 1.08 is technically not even in the positive range, though it isn't quite in the negative range either and triggered that secondary test that came back positive), and the WB is the final say. They obviously don't understand these tests at all. Plus, by June, I hadn't had sex for 6 weeks, and the only person I'd been with since February was *definitely* negative. (He's very, very careful about HSV2, and all of this did seriously damage our relationship, unfortunately, seemingly beyond repair, though there are other things going on due to the pandemic and other responsibilities he has, so it's a bit complicated.)

I'm a scientist, and when I was worried about the results, I spent a lot of time looking for medical literature that compared rates positive actually found to be positive with the antibody level in this initial test. I couldn't find anything that looked at things with exactly that question in mind, but it did seem that research in various other areas that included both tests found the chances of a true positive being very low below 2 and rising with increasing values. I haven't looked for so long now that I don't have the links for the papers that I saw, but auntiejessie's take on it as at least 85% chance of a false positive if under 2 sounds reasonable given what I looked at.

With no symptoms, you seem to be in the same boat I was, so my guess is that you and auntiejessie are right in this being a false positive.
monkeydoctor, I love when you chime in. :) Your experience is so valuable.

There is so little published on this. I get a lot of info from Terri Warren, who mentions studies on her site, but I can't usually find those. But yes, it does all point to being at least 85% if under 2.

Hope you are doing well! :)
Hi there!,

Yeah, we are definitely in the same boat when it comes to results. I'm sorry you had to deal with your uninformed Doctor, but at least you found someone else who was willing to test you so you could put this to rest. It shouldn't have to take 2-3 months to get your hands on testing like this, but some PCP's are just stubborn and don't put any extra effort into researching what the guidelines are. Thankfully, I did have some luck with another PCP who was perfectly fine with signing the forms so the test kit can be sent to me. I'm now just yet again a sitting duck and at the mercy of my Doctor. I'm hoping I receive a response this week saying she's signed and sent the requisition back. I would like to have some sort of good news this year!

I'm super hopeful that this test will be negative. I've never had any symptoms or any signs of a viral infection. I just can't believe the hassle you go through to get this test and I wish Doctors were more educated on this topic. It shouldn't be this hard and frustrating. Just like you, it negatively affected my relationship along with other issues on his end. This person knew of the test, how long it would take, the price, etc and yet still wanted me to do another IgG, which I flat out refused. I knew going into this test that it would take some time, and since we have all the time in the world right now, might as well just wait it out, lol

He wanted you to do another IgG? Does he think you bleed money so you can just spend it stupidly?

(Sorry. I've decided he annoys me.)

Your story is a perfect example of doctors not knowing anything, the reasons why that hurts patients in so many ways, and why they need to do better. :(

Hope you're hanging in there!
We’re all annoyed with this idiot lol He actually is rather well off, and I think he fails to understand that we are not in the same boat. Funny how he didn’t wanna help pay and then say we’re better off as friends. He just sucks as a person in general, and I don’t need that in my life, especially when he says I need to SHOW him this stuff, when I did in fact send him links and stats. He even did research himself, so why would he ask for another IgG? Duh.

I’m barely hanging in there- I’m currently waiting to be seen for x-ray, as I feared my running streak has did a number on my right knee. I fear it’s my ACL or meniscus, or possibly both. I’m in quite a bit of pain, and me responding to a medical emergency outside my house yesterday exacerbated it 10-fold.  I don’t think anything is torn, as I’ve torn my ACL on my left side and know the wonderful popping you get when you do tear it, but I think it’s just overstretched....I hope.  I’m gonna be out 4-6 weeks now, which means no exercise really, and I bought a knee brace to help.
Oh no! My ex had a torn meniscus, and he walked on it for quite a long time before it got really bad. I hope it's not that. If I remember correctly - it's been some time - he needed an MRI to diagnose that. I may be wrong, though.

And responding to medical emergencies outside your house? No good deed goes unpunished, huh? Hope you're okay!
Knee injuries ain’t no joke! And you’re right, an MRI is way better for screening, and I even asked the Doctor about that. He said right now, it wasn’t necessary but in my mind it makes sense to just do the MRI and have it done and out of the way rather than me receiving an inconclusive report from the Radiologist and then have to be seen for an MRI...but what do I know? This ain’t my first rodeo with this stuff, but whatever. At least this is 100% covered.

As for the emergency, this dude drove into a tapas bar across the street from my house and destroyed the street pole next to it. He was going about 60-70mph. Car was totaled, part of the building is obviously destroyed. He fled and hid underneath a car! He is very lucky to be alive. He literally had small abrasions, nothing else that I could see physically, though I’m sure he has some internal injuries. He was definitely on something and most likely the car was stolen. They had a city crew out all night fixing the damage- I saw that the street lights were out too, so I’m guessing he ruined the wiring or something to the lights as well.

This is what I get for trying to be healthy and potentially save a life. Lol
Wow, that's scary! I'm glad you weren't in the building he crashed into.

Nothing healthcare is logical or convenient. They have yet to figure out that they spend so much more than needed doing it the way they do. When do you get the results?

I’ve never even stepped foot into that restaurant, lol I think most of it is fish/seafood, which I don’t eat. I’m honestly surprised it gets regular business. Where I live, businesses don’t usually last long. It’s a somewhat weird area to have places like that around, and I’m sure now that they have damages to pay for, it’s going to be harder to stay afloat.

And yes, it’s never straightforward. It like they make it difficult on purpose. It’s a total waste of time and resources to be going back and forth when you could just cut to the chase and order the appropriate labs/exams. Not sure when I’ll get the results- maybe by tomorrow or Wednesday?

My PCP also reached out to me and said she spoke to the University of Washington. My kit is being sent out, so now once I have the kit I’ll have to speak to the mobile phlebotomist to set up an appointment for them. I need to see if they require any approval from my doctor, but I don’t think so since I’m paying out of pocket. All the university wants is the signed requisition, so that makes it easy. The hardest part is the damn shipment process. As long as the results are sent to her and are relayed to me, that’s all I care about. My printer is broken, so I can’t even fill the consent form out to have the U of W send me my results.
Wow that's PROGRESS.

Is there a library near you? You can often use their computers and printers for free. Are they even open?

Your doctor can also give you a copy. By law, you have a right to all chart info. You may have to pay for the copy, but you can get it.

How's your knee?
Yeah, I’m very surprised! But I’m glad she was on board and didn’t think I was crazy.

Libraries are still closed, unfortunately. I think FedEx is near me, so I could print from there as well. It’s not terribly expensive. I’ll just have to find the form again and fill it out. :)

I actually took this entire week off. My knee is still swollen and sore. Still waiting on a report from Radiology...it’s taking longer than usual. I bought a supportive knee brace but I’m still feeling pain on the medial side of my knee, so I’m not quite sure what to do at this point. We’re also going through a heat wave AGAIN, so it’s probably a good thing I’m at home and not at work. My poor joints would be even more swollen, and I’d be dying in the PPE since it’s 91 out. Yeah, no thanks! The doctor I saw for my knee also said it’s most likely my ACL and meniscus, but he doesn’t think it’s torn, which I agree. Guess we’ll find out soon!

Hope you’re holding up well!
I can't believe you are still waiting for the report for your knee. I hope you get that soon. That's crazy.

And another heat wave? Poor SF. And it's been one thing after another for you. :(

Doing fine here. We've had record heat, but I have AC, so it's not a big deal, just annoying.

You mentioned earlier that you were waiting for your MD to contact you about the WB - have you heard from them?

Take care!
Knowing my luck and how this whole fiasco is going, I won't see the report until next week. Not surprised, just extremely disappointed.

You guys are lucky to have AC, though we do get our summers late in the year over here, but climate change is real, that's all I can say. It's never been hot like this until recently. When we had our summers years ago, it was in the mid-70's. 90's is very unusual for us.

And OK, funny thing happened last night- I received a message from the other MD- remember the one who originally denied me but agreed that this test would be beneficial? She sent me a message stating she spoke with Infectious Disease and they said if I wanted this test then I could do it. She's willing to help on her end of things to get the ball rolling. WOW. It literally took her 3 weeks to change her mind? I'm still waiting on a requisition to be sent to me from the other MD I spoke to. I know a form comes in the kit, but I also sent her the file for it so she could print and fill it out and send it to me. If I don't see anything by next week or get a message from her, I'll have to ask the other MD to do the form. Ugh, this is still very frustrating on my end.
WOW. Just... wow. I don't even know what to say to that. I guess I'm glad that she's admitting her mistake - sort of, because I doubt seriously that she said, "Hey Bird, I'm really sorry that I messed this up, but..." At least you'll have a back up if you need it.

I can't believe what a roller coaster this is. I've said this so often already, but it just shouldn't be this hard.

I hope you have a good weekend, and maybe you'll get some answers about your knee. Stay cool and as pain-free as possible. That's also getting ridiculous. I really hope they don't just say there was nothing on the x-ray, now you need an MRI. :(
I’m telling ya, this year sucks as a whole lol. I’m pretty much anticipating anything and everything. I’m glad she’s willing to help, but again she should’ve just agreed the first time around. I really don’t understand people.

I hope you have a good weekend too! It’s currently 95 here, so I’ll be off to my friends house in a couple hours because he’s nice enough to let me stay while he’s at work. His studio is cool inside and they actually have a pool. The joys of luxury apartments. :)

I’ll keep you posted, as usual!
So, my test kit came in today! I’m wondering if I can use any provider, as I happen to know a doctor who could technically sign for me...out of all people, I found out my friend’s mom is a doctor! So, if she’s allowed to fill out the form, that would save me some time.

Anyone know if that’s ok to do, or do I need my actual PCP to fill the form out? It’s been a week. I just want to get this done and over with. Ugh.
I think you can use any provider, so long as it's a licensed medical practitioner. Go through your friend's mom, for sure. I don't think they know who your PCP is, really, and who your GYN would be, etc. I mean, Terri Warren can do it, and she isn't anyone's PCP. Did you request it or did your PCP? That may be the only complication.

You could always call and ask them.

Any word on your knee?
I’ll definitely ask her, as I still haven’t had any word back from my PCP. I’m the one who requested the kit, so I kinda figured I could use any doctor as long as their NPI is valid and whatnot. I really don’t want this dragging out any longer than it has been. While I haven’t known my friend or their family for long, he is aware of my potential status. I just know that the results would get sent to her office, and I’m not too sure where she practices (somewhere on the east coast), but if I fill out that other form, I’ll have the results sent directly to me as well.

As for my knee, still nothing from my hospital. Go figure. It does feel better, and not as swollen and stiff. Wearing the brace sucks, and while it applies more pressure on my joints as it should, I notice I have more pain when wearing it. I can’t win, lol

Work is very accommodating though, which is surprising since most places don’t give a damn. They’re willing to change my schedule, or help me out with grocery delivery and stuff because I don’t really have much help on my end. I would never expect a company or any job to do that.

I hope all is well on your end!
I'd call the hospital. I'd hate for your results to be sitting on someone's desk while they are on vacation, or out sick or something.

It just shouldn't be this complicated. You're in one of the biggest cities in the country, and health care should be easier than this. I am glad to hear that your company is working with you.  That's awfully nice of them. :)

I'm sorry you're still dealing with all of this.
I didn’t get the chance to ask her if she could sign the form, but I think I’m safe if I send in that request for UW to mail them to me as well. I don’t think they can tell me my results over the phone...I know UW doesn’t do that.  

I wish it wasn’t complicated, but that’s just how it goes sometimes. I could see if I could stop by today and ask my friend’s mom, I just hate bothering her if she has time off. I’m sure the last thing she wants to deal with is more medical stuff lol
Keep me posted. Most places now don't give results over the phone now, but since this is all unusual, and if you get your friend's mom to do it, maybe she will.

So, I have the phlebotomist coming to my place on November 6th.

If anyone is curious about the cost, I’m paying $453. This is based in CA, so the mobile blood draw service is about $200.

I’ll let you know what the results are in a couple weeks! Thanks again for all of your help. :)

My knee is also feeling better- still hesitant about running, so I’m going to give it another week and see how I feel.
WOW. What does the $453 include? Is that everything? (I sure hope so.)

Did you ever get results on your knee? Glad it's feeling better. :)
So the $453 is the test ($253) plus the blood draw ($199). I knew it would be expensive....gonna see if insurance will at least cover the blood draw.

As for my knee, still NOTHING from the hospital. I think they lost my films honestly. Like why would it take this long?

I’m also dealing with other things...involving a “friendship”, but I’m just gonna call it a “situationship”. Good ol 2020 never fails me. This person is also dealing with a shingles outbreak! The craziness doesn’t end lol
Holy crap, that's a lot for a blood draw.

Have you called the hospital? You're going to get a bill for this, and no results?

Situationship - that sounds complicated lol. I've heard of so many people having shingles outbreaks this year. It's crazy. Shingles used to just be something old people get. It's strange, but I'm sure stress has something to do with it.

2020 - I will not be unhappy to see this year end, and 2021 better have LOADS of improvements. I'm not getting my hopes up yet.
I’m assuming it’s not as bad anywhere else- I just happen to live in one of the most expensive cities, so it makes sense why it’s $200.  I mean, we have $20 salads and $8 lemonade.

Haven’t called the hospital- luckily my insurance covers this 100%, so I’m not getting billed whatsoever! I’m just tired of dealing with doctors. Pretty much done with dealing with people in general lol

As for the situationship, I’m just leaving it as-is. Let them figure it out because I’m tired of trying to at this point. I’m over it. I’m considering going back into school as well for Public Health, but I need to do more research on what it entails. I don’t have time trying to figure out a person at this point. As for their shingles, they’re still recovering from it. I told them they may be on Gabapentin for awhile, as you get that “post herpetic syndrome” where you still have the sensitivity and pain months after your outbreak. Just depends on their body. Sucks for them, but at least this’ll be their only OB...hopefully. That’s usually how shingles works.

I ain’t even rooting for 2021 lol it’s still gonna be a crap shoot. The world is gonna be funky for awhile....
I feel you. You definitely do get to a point where you are just done, and yes, SF is EXPENSIVE.

I had shingles years ago, after a major surgery. I didn't need additional meds because I was already on pain meds from the surgery, and thankfully, I didn't get the PHN.

Definitely look into Public Health. That's going to be an in demand field for a long time lol.

Rents have dropped! But I’m sure it’s still very expensive compared to other states.

It’s so weird how the body works- one stressful event triggers a response. He’s in the healing stages- apparently the blisters are starting to scab over slowly. I just told him to wash his hands and don’t touch his eyes. I bought him a spray on cream just to help soothe and calm it down if he has any itchiness. He’s off the antivirals, and I think he’ll be done with the Gabapentin soon.

I feel like I should just take advantage while everything is remote- at least I could easily transfer. I’d have to get into the MPH program afterwards, or just find a school that’s all online and complete the MPH. Berkeley is nuts- they wants 3 chem classes, Bio, and advanced math. My university near me requires one chem class- the rest are the principles of Public Health and stuff. Really weird that the classes are different.
Why do you need all the chem classes for an MPH? And advanced math? Not stats? Strange. Go for the one that has more related classes - that's my advice, from the sounds of it. :)
I took Stats luckily, along with sociology and psychology (I’m a social and behavioral sciences major from the start). SFSU requires basic bio, which I could take at my CC for free, and then just take the core classes for the program. They only require microbiology for this program. I might just take the plunge. There’s a reason why students are so depressed and stressed at Berkeley- that workload ain’t no joke. I’d fail. Lol
Omg so would I. I understand being a well-rounded student, but why take a ton of classes you don't need? How many of us are going to use advanced math in real life?


I can tell you already, I have NEVER used Stats in my career, lol as for advanced classes, it makes no sense. Honestly school should be geared to whatever major you choose- just give us the classes we need to graduate. I feel like there is no need for us to take classes that don’t pertain to our major. I’m sorry, but ceramics or organic chem will not help me out in the long run. Give me the core stuff. I wish schools were more hands-on. That’s like the best way to learn. I guess that’s why those vocational schools cost an arm and a leg because they actually follow that rule. They get you in and out, no fuss, no unnecessary classes.

By the way, I have my blood draw this coming Thursday! I will let you know of the results once they come to me! :)
I also have never used stats, nor any kind of advanced math. Nor has anyone, ever, cared what college I went to, or what grades I got, either in undergrad or grad. Only once did I have to provide transcripts, and that was a Master's-required position. The people I worked with went to state schools, community colleges, private colleges, Ivy League, and everything in between. No one even cared.

Ohhh I'm excited to hear the results! You've waited a loonnng time for this.

So update- I was told the test is $199 for the draw. I was literally told the day before my blood draw that it’s $234....WOW. I don’t know why it’s expensive for a kit draw, as I’m the one providing the kit, ice pack and tube. They should’ve told me this earlier, because I would’ve looked for another service. I can’t back out now since my blood draw is tomorrow, and they’d charge me a cancellation fee. Kinda screwed here.
Omg that sucks. How much is the cancellation fee? I don't know if you have enough time to look for another service that would be that much less to make up for the cancel fee?

It would be $117, and the other place I looked at apparently charges $125? I’m just gonna suck it up and pay for it. My hands are kinda tied at this point....
Yeah, I'd probably do the same. And you have the appt today - you'll just get it done finally.
So the blood draw went well! Very quick and efficient service! And I got the invoice, and I was only charged $199 so I guess the lady I spoke to was wrong about the pricing.

Spoke to my insurance and they said they most likely wouldn’t cover it because it’s an outside lab, but I could try and get a PA from my doctor and have them submit a claim....at this point I don’t even trust them to do that. I’m just glad I got everything done after months of back and forth. Now the waiting game begins!

Hope all is well on your end! :) I’m still pondering whether or not to take the plunge with going back into school. I’m kinda late in terms of registration plus having to deal with the joys of FAFSA. I read that some states are now giving out financial aid at a first come, first serve basis. Most likely I’d register for summer session if basic Bio is offered at that time, then just go into fall session with core classes. I wouldn’t be able to be a FT student, unless somehow money falls out of the sky lol I could always take out a loan, but I’ve always tried to avoid that option.
Ohhh good, I'm glad the price was what you thought at first, and it went well. Any idea of when you'll get the results?

FAFSA - I just got a full body shiver lol. I'm doing fine. Just working, watching COVID numbers rise again. Expected nothing different lol.

Yeah, the appointment setup is rather easy. Phlebotomist arrived early too, so that was even better. I’m still gonna expect a 3 week turnaround time. Not gonna hope for anything earlier lol

I predicted back in July that we’d have another wave by November and I was right- the US had about 92,000 new cases about 3 days ago, making it the second highest rate since the pandemic began here. Just cancel the holidays, lol there’s no point this year.
I'm with you on canceling holidays, but I'm sure most won't. Yesterday, there were something like 120K cases.

Three weeks seems like a long time, but then again, what even is time anymore lol?

Yikes, that’s what my coworker told me...it’s been very busy at my job, like nonstop people being tested all because they’re going to Hawaii or visiting parents. We’re seeing 2400 people a day? This whole week has been slammed. Not to mention, we have crappy weather headed our way.

In terms of time, I literally just know I have to be somewhere at this point lol I get up, throw on scrubs or workout pants and go to work. It’s like clockwork for me. This morning, for some reason I thought I was late and jumped out of bed and threw my clothes on. It was only 5:30. I honestly think daylight savings coupled with the pandemic has just thrown everyone off. I’m literally just existing at this point and working because I have to.
2400 a day? That's insanity.

I'd love to go to Hawaii, but come on. That's happening everywhere, though - people are going on vacations and girls' trips, and whatnot. Some days I feel like I'm the only one that remembers were in a pandemic.

Remember to take care of you.
HAHA! Girl, I got so irritated on Sunday. I had people who were symptomatic standing in front of me saying they need testing done. I told them they need to be at home, quarantining. What’s worse is that one of them is an ICU nurse at UCSF, and she was more concerned about going to her night shift the next day and was wondering when her results would arrive. She said it herself that she could not smell anything, yet she bothered to come here and still wants to show up to work?! She’s also never been tested even though she’s been around COVID patients. Come on, really? The stupidity is mind blowing.

I already know testing is going to be rampant here because of the holidays...I’m expecting it to be nonstop because everyone wants to see family. It’s gonna be a rough few months, that’s all I can say.
I'm sure everyone wants the negative test for work, school, travel (!!!), whatever.

Well, at least until the end of Jan., you have job security... :)
That’s all well and good, but if you’re symptomatic, you need to be at home, not standing 3 feet away from me telling me that you’re sick. The city has been slacking for months in terms of proper fitting PPE. While I can fit test others, I failed mine right off the bat and I knew I would. None of the masks fit me properly- I can literally smell perfume, food, and the inside of someone’s car. They just started fist testing employees last month...big yikes.

I do have some job security at least, and I’ll end up going per diem after my contract ends which is good. I won’t have to scramble too much for work, plus it’ll help me out if I go back into school. Lots of things for me to consider here, but I’m not too pleased about the lack of proper fitting PPE, especially when cases have drastically increased. SF has finally shut down indoor dining.
That's really scary. Mask 101 says fit test.

We aren't shutting anything down here. Don't even get me started. Politics aren't allowed on this site (it's a medical site, so that's fair), and I could go off lol.

Stay safe!
Exactly! My coworker and I just started fit testing our coworkers. I tested about 6 people today and only 2 or 3 passed. I fail every fit test because the masks just don’t fit me...we’re at the mercy of the city and whatever they provide us, but if you’re like me and nothing fits, my company is going to need to spend the money on a different kind of mask. It sucks, but of course I’d be the difficult person to fit test lol

I’m not surprised that your state isn’t shutting anything down...it’s very sad that people still think this is just a mild flu or that it’ll pass but it won’t. I feel bad for my friend- she lost her mom to COVID 3 weeks ago. She’s also forced to teach in person and the principal refuses to shut the school down. It’s like she lives in la la land. Apparently they’ve shown her the news articles about how we’re rapidly increasing in cases here, yet she doesn’t want to revert back to WFH. I’m hoping they’ll be forced to shut down. It’s not worth it. Why someone would reopen the school a month before the year ends makes no sense to me...

It's all just really scary, and a lot is just really stupid. I'm sorry for your friend. :(

Stay safe!
Update! My Doctor reached out! I’m negative for HSV-2!

This is my Christmas gift for this year. Literally the best gift I’ve received lol

Just wanted to say thank you for all of your help with this. I hope you stay safe and healthy. Enjoy the holidays as best as you can :)
I was thinking about you today, and wondering if you'd heard. I'm going to be gone next week for the holiday, and was going to check in to see if you'd posted.

I am so, so happy for you. Congrats!

You're very welcome, and I'm glad I could help. Enjoy your holidays, as best as possible. Stay safe out there! :)
Awww well I’m glad that I’ve got some good news for you after all of these months of frustration. It’s been very busy at work and we’ve been swamped. People are all coming in for travel. The city is urging people to not use city-run test sites for travel. It’s clogging up our system and we’re booked 2-3 weeks out. They have access to 3 other test sites here plus the hospitals. It’s been rough out here.

Hopefully you’re not traveling too far- I’m sure you know cases have risen. Even we’re in the red tier from what I recall. Just be safe! Travel in a hazmat suit for safe measure, lol
I didn't travel at all - just took some time away from everything. :)

The same thing happened here - all the city/county run testing sites were backed up with travel tests. Insane.

Stay safe out there!
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