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Avatar universal

history of SEVERE atopic dermatitis & eczma and now tested positive for HSV2

Hi... I've had provlems with SEVERE atopic dermatitis and eczema all my life as well as a few other minor skin issues ( like as a kid i ended up getting chicken pox THREE times)   and to give you a better idea of how bad i tend to  get flair ups  of my atopic dermatitis and eczema that are bad enough  that  i've even had doctors test me for Lupus before because i've had times  where it was SO bad it didnt clear up till given a few weeks of prednisone.. and i even have areas  of my body that are mottled with scaring due to scratching so bad when i was a kid before getting to where i had to self control NOT to scratch myself raw. I also have a sensitivity to MANY chemicals..   (i also have numerous other health problems  with misalignment of my bones and joints that partially dislocate easily  as well as a badly damaged disc in my lower back and sever pain problems also in my upper back in the area of my T6 vertebra so i have developed a pretty high tolerance to discomfort)....

anyway back a few weeks ago   i went for my annual PAP test and STD testing and  my tests showed positive for HSV2....  now this REALLY freaked me out.. especially since i wasnt expecting it...  i had also just started a new relationship  a few weeks prior but before that had been celibate since january 2010 and had had a few tests in that time period that showed negative for HSV2 (tests done  between february 2010 and july 2010.. )    I DID tell my current partner that i'd tested positive and well my first assumption was that i'd probably got it from him but,  he's never had ANY type of symptioms that are usually seen for either type of herpes, he also has NEVER ever had sex without using a condom (hes extremely careful because he doesnt want to ever accidentally father a child  unless he CHOOSES to)  and he's getting tested but the lab screwed it up  last week when he wen to have it done so he's got to go back in and have blood drawn again and we've got to wait on the results..   anyway i havent showed any types of genital region herpes symptoms and no cold sores or oral hsv2 type symptoms either.. (yeah we did do some oral but anyway)    i'm one who tends to when i'm freaked about something i try to research it,  anyway i was reading and i ended up reading about that it is possible to end up contracting herpes through  eczema and atopic dermatitis lesions ... and well   several months ago i did have one morning i woke up with one arm all hugely swolen up , and the swelling went down after like 7 hours on its own but then within a few hours of that i'd suddenly developed a few completely unexplained bumps (looked a bit like mosquito bites at first but not really and fealt different) that within a couple hours had all turned to blisters , which then kinda just deteriorated and sort of deflated and cracked open into sores on their own  within a day- day and a half...  over the week and a half following that i had several more that of those things that came and went, my Drs  werent sure what they were and didnt do any sorts of tests  and just said they "might be hives?"   but they weren't sure...  anyway  over the last few months i also have  getting a rash of crusty reddish bumps scattered  across the skin of my  outer arms  with each little tiny bump  having the top center be sort of off color and more like a healing sore (but like the size of goose bumps but not, and not at the hair follicules )    it  my roommate even remarked on it as wondering what the new type of rash was..   i hadnt thought much of it till now just 'cause i've had SO many issues with the dermatitis..   but i've also noticed that since my gynocologist put me on valacyclovir HCL 500mg  the crusted bumps on my arms are starting to heal/fade away  better than even with my  betamethazone ointment i have for the atopic dermatitis (which hadnt helped with the red crusty bumps i had on my  outer arm, it had helped when i got my usual type of rash) ....

what i am wanting to know is what are the chances that  the blisters and tiny crusted bump/sores  could be  a manifestation of the hsv, and also i want to know since i HAVENT had the symptoms show up other than  on my arms  so far  if that is the case and the guy i am seeing is negative for HSV2 and didnt give it to me  well  what is the likely hood of him and i being able to continue to be intimate without him  contracting the virus?    also is there any way to be tested to see if my arm is the infection site since i dont have the blisters anymore?  also since  it was a few months ago that i had the unexplained blisters/sores on my arm   do i still have  to worry as much about all the systemic type  stuff it talks about on most  sites that mention herpetic eczema?   some sites i saw said that it can lead to problems with internal organs and stuff even... but honestly at this point i'm more worried about the possibility of it being passed on to my guy  because well  I've already got enough medical issues that the other stuff about this doesnt worry me as much as my families high rates of breast and uterine cancer.. lol..   I just REALLY dont want to pass this on to my guy if he doesnt have it  because well he is a really great guy and i care about him a lot, but i want to know if its safe for me to do stuff like cuddle with him and have sex with him  and such  or if he could end up catching HSV2 even if i make a point of keeping the area i did show symptoms away from his genitals  (he doesnt have eczma or atopic dermatitis so i'm assuming he could only catch it through the usual body parts?)
8 Responses
1705114 tn?1314218504
It would be helpful if you could tell us the type of tests you had done along with their results. No symptoms does not mean you do not have hsv2. 90% of people with hsv2 do not realize they have it until tested. Condoms also only protect against the transmission of herpes by 30%.
Avatar universal
it was the type specific type of ELISA test  and it showed positive for HSV2 and negative for HSV1.... ALSO you need to read a lot further in what i wrote if you are asking that since i did NOT  say "NO SYMPTOMS" i said i havent showed any types of genital region herpes symptoms and no cold sores or oral hsv2 type symptoms either.. and i said that HE hasnt showed any symptoms and obviously i already know that him not showing symptoms doesnt mean he doesnt have it since i did say that I assumed i got it from him at first  even though he hasnt had symptoms ever   and i did say he is going to get tested... (i'm not sure what type of testing his dr is going to be using)    but  most of what i was asking about was for in case  he does get results back saying that he is negative and does NOT have HSV2. because if it turns out he didnt give it to me and i  did get it   instead because some random moron was probably scratching or playing with their crotch   a few minutes before touching my arm   well i  dont want  to pass it on to him if i can avoid it.  He is a GREAT guy  as in even with us talking and the  high likelyhood that he could have unknowingly given me HSV2   we are still able to talk to each other about it..  and even thoguh every time i call  him to discuss something about this  i always feel awkward before and feel like its gonna be awkward   once we are talking  it never is, as horrid and awefull and terrifying  as going through this is (especially since from what i've read  herpes CAN be deadly for people who have atopic dermatitis  or eczema to start with if they get a bad outbreak because it can disseminate and spread to EVERYWHERE including internal organs and parts and eyes etc when combined with the two skin conditions)   i honestly dont think i could have ever ended up with a better guy to be going through it with.  
1705114 tn?1314218504
I read these posts quite fast and I am sorry if I missed anything. I read that you said he has never had symptoms which is why I put in that no symptoms does not mean you do not have it. The whole scenario of scratching your crotch and then touching someones arm is not how you contract hsv2. It is considered an STD because you need sexual activity to transmit the virus. Let's just wait to see what his test results are first before asking what of questions. Also if you could post your actual numerical value for the test that would help us futher examine your situation
101028 tn?1419603004
there are false positive issues with the herpes igg blood tests. if you can call and get the actual numeric result to post here, I can better help you figure out if you need further confirmatory testing done and when it needs done ( once we know your partners test results ).

could this be hsv2 on your arms? it could be but it's doubtful. continue to follow up with your dermatologists as needed. It's also not likely you'd contract hsv2 on the arms from someone randomly touching you after they've touched their genital area - it just doesn't transfer that easily, even in the presence of eczema and immunosuppression from steroid use ( which is always a good thing! ).

Avatar universal
as i stated before i KNOW that its not common to end up getting herpetic eczema (also called eczema herpeticum)  (which is what its called when you get it through atopic dermatitis or eczema lesions and NOT through direct oral or genital contact)...

@ franklinandbash  yes hsv CAN be gotten by someone touching an arm (or anywhere else that has a severe atopic dermatitis flair up or eczema flair up....   and herpes is not JUST an std it CAN also be transmitted by kissing or people touching themselves while they've got an outbreak and then touching another person  in an area on that person that is susceptible to the virus.  in any case that wasnt what i was asking about since i've DONE the research and know it WOULD have been possible to contract it that way and that i'm just lucky that  i didnt end up with it disseminating   and killing me  which DOES happen sometimes with eczema herpeticum.

@ gracefromHHP  considering that  in the past year i've had several times i've been put on prednisone for various reasons  in ADDITION to  having to use betamethasone ointment
  and quite frankly one source i read likened   the chances of HSV spreading to a person via their eczema with the Analogy of forest fire and dry undergrowth..  

so as i said before my post on here was NOT  asking about the chances of how i caught HSV2 . what i was asking about  was  i was wanting to know that IF my partner turns out  to be negative so far  i wanted to know if anyone had any experiance to know  what the chances are that he might end up catching it from me if we do continue our relationship.
101028 tn?1419603004
At this point we need to confirm your own status as well as that of your partners. Once we have more information, we will certainly provide you with the additional information that you and your partner can take into consideration for as far as deciding what precautions to take together.  You can get the risk to a male partner down to 1%/year of contracting hsv2 from you on average.

Also keep in mind that even if you do actually have hsv2, doesn't mean that this is what is going on on your arm. I understand that when you read about hsv and eczema it does present as rather scarey but thankfully eczema herpeticum doesn't happen all that often especially in adults.  Without a + lesion culture from your arm, no way to know for sure.

101028 tn?1419603004
also as I previously have said, you won't get herpes from someone touching your arm unless of course they had an active herpes ob on their hands/arms when they touched you and even then the risk of such is still rather low.

please do not hesitate to pay to post to Terri Warren, our herpes expert here on medhelp for additional help since you don't seem to be believing much of what we are saying so far.
1705114 tn?1314218504
The herpes you are referring to in your kissing comment is hsv1. I never said anything about hsv1 as your post only asks about hsv2.. I never comment on a post  where I don't feel my advice is somewhat accurate. Also be very wary when researching herpes, or any other subject online. There are sites out there with very outdated information . I also highly agree with Grace that
you post to Terri Warren as you obviously do not
believe things being said on this forum.

Hope all is well.
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