March 13, 2019 at 1:42 pm #31758
3 weeks ago my female spouse of 13 years was diagnosed via swab with HSV-1 in the genital area; she had a blood test that returned negative for HSV-1 & 2 antibodies. I also had a blood test that returned negative for the IgG antibodies. I have been completely monogamous; she indicates she has as well. This leaves thinking either I recently acquired HSV-1 and gave it to her via oral sex and it’s too soon for the antibodies to be present in my blood or someone else did. Are there any other scenarios (i.e., can one get HSV-1 genitally without some form of direct person to person contact or from themselves somehow)? Also, how long should I wait before being retested for the antibodies?
March 19, 2019 at 8:10 am #32343
If you have been completely monogamous, how would you recently have acquired HSV 1? I’m a little confused about those two statements.
The IgG test for HSV 1 misses 30% of HSV 1 infections. I would recommend that you check the testing that was done (be sure it was IgG, not IgM). So the test could have missed your infection and she maybe negative on the antibody test because she was very recently infected and has not yet had an opportunity to make antibody. OR she could have been infected genitally for years and is having a recurrence and the IgG test missed her long standing infection as well and you are not infected. The western blot is the definitive test for herpes antibody and if you want to know you actual HSV 1 status, I would recommend that you obtain this test.
There is no need to wait to get retested if you have had no exposures to anyone else, as you stated.
March 19, 2019 at 9:20 am #32354
Thanks for the response. I have been completely monogamous and just wasn’t sure if there is some other way to get HSV-1. The blood test I did was The Herpes Type Specific Immunoblot Test by ELISA/IFA.
Is my understanding right that on her side of things there’s a decent possibility (30%?) that she has had a HSV-1 genital infection for some time and the test just missed the antibodies? Is it common for symptoms to suddenly present after several years of dormancy?
To get HSV-1 genitally one has to have some direct contact with another and exposure to virus on a surface like a toilet seat would not result in an infection, correct?
March 23, 2019 at 10:38 am #32678
Thanks for the clarification. Herpes is transmitted by kissing and by sexual activity.
Yes, the IgG could certainly have missed an old infection. And yes, because HSV 1 recurs so infrequently, it is quite common to have no symptoms for years and then have an outbreak. BEcause you are both negative on the IgG test, the test could have missed it in both of you OR it missed your infection and she is negative because she is newly infected and not enough time has gone by for her to have antibody.
It does require direct contact yes, and for genital HSV 1, the most common source is oral sex.
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