November 4, 2014 at 11:52 pm #1664
Good evening, Terri.
Approximately six months ago, I had unprotected sex with a new partner. Since then, I have been asymptomatic, have not experienced outbreaks, and have returned to an old partner (whom is tested and clean, has always worn protection, and has not given me oral sex since we have continued our relationship).
About two weeks ago, I withdrew blood for STD testing. I received the results last night, which were extremely vague. I was told positive for IgM antibodies and that there is no treatment unless I start experiencing outbreaks/lesions. I asked the nurse if I have herpes and she responded saying I’ve been exposed (not exactly a straightforward response).
I went to the office this morning to receive more clarification. A different nurse told me that I was IgM positive for both types, but it was very weak (I do not know the levels) and negative for IgG antibodies. She mentioned that it most likely means that I have been exposed in the last few weeks, which is confusing since I have been monogamous with my current partner. She also said that I should repeat blood work in 3-6 months and the results could possibly come back negative; what does this mean?
My core questions are:
1. Do I have herpes?
2. How likely is it that my partner now contracted it from me? (We have used a condom every time and he has not performed oral sex.)
3. Can I receive oral? Can I continue having sex?
4. What are other ways that I could have contracted it? Can it be contracted by using something like a person’s eating utensil or cup?
Thank you for your time.
November 5, 2014 at 1:09 am #1666
The IgM is totally useless and give many false positives. I hate it that clinicians still order such a terrible test and alarm patients with these results.
If your IgG is negative at least four months after the last contact, then you, with 97% certainty, don’t have HSV 2 infection.
So that means that questions 2,3, and 4 are not necessary. If it has been at least 4 months between the time of your last contact with the new partner and the time of the IgG test and the IgG test is negative, you are in the clear. I know, that’s repeating myself but I wanted to make it really clear.
Please ask any further questions that you have about your situation, OK?
November 5, 2014 at 1:36 am #1667
Thank you very much, Terri. This response is putting my mind at ease. I will follow up with another test soon just to be sure.
Just a short question: What are some of the causes that could have had this positive result?
November 5, 2014 at 2:10 am #1668
are you asking me what causes a positive IgM test? I honestly have no idea. It is just such an unreliable test with so many false positives! But whatever you do, don’t get another IgM test. The IgM is a type of antibody that sometimes come up early in infection for other disease states. But in the case of herpes, it is often present with old infection as well as new infection and the test is often falsely positive as well. Please try to ignore it.
- This reply was modified 6 years, 11 months ago by Terri Warren.
November 5, 2014 at 2:22 am #1670
I will. Thank you. I want to still get re-tested in 3-6 months. The nurse told me that the test I had done did both IgM and IgG and I showed up negative for IgG. I know this is not phrased in a question, but if you have any feedback, I appreciate it. Thank you again for your time.
November 5, 2014 at 2:24 am #1671
You can test again, but if it has been 4 months or more since your last contact with the new contact, it is clearly not needed. The timing is from your last sexual contact, not your last test. Your call, but if you were my patient, I would not recommend it at all. And DO NOT get an IgM again, please!
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