December 3, 2015 at 9:02 am #10833confusedandscaredParticipant
Last week, I had what I’m pretty sure is a herpes outbreak. I’ve never had one before. The last time I had sex was protected oral and vaginal sex around seven weeks ago. Before that I had unprotected oral and protected vaginal sex about three months prior to that. That is my sexual history from June till now. Never had any issues since any of these sexual encounters. Last Tuesday, I took a flu shot. By thursday I noticed itching in my pubic hair area, saw three red patches. They eventually got little pimples and I dried them out with mexsana powder. They went away, there is still red marks though, but they are going away too. I also got what felt like really bad jock itch in my crural fold. This was all on my left side, the same side I got my flu shot.
My questions are:
1. Could a flu shot trigger a first outbreak? If so, is this more likely with HSV1 or HSV2?
2. How could I have an outbreak or initial outbreak in my pubic area and crural fold. I’ve read that is not very common?
3. I read in an earlier post that the skin of certain areas is too thick for asymptomatic shedding, that usually happens with thin skinned areas like penis. Does that include the pubic hair area? If I have no lesions there, does that mean it cant pass on herpes?
4. If I only had unprotected oral sex, is it likely that this is HSV1?
5. If I have sex with a condom and only have outbreaks on my pubic area, never on penis, does that make sex safer for the other person?
I know i have other questions, but Im drawing a blank.
Thank you so much.
December 3, 2015 at 12:30 pm #10837Terri WarrenKeymaster
No, a flu shot could not trigger a herpes outbreak.
2. If your last sexual contact was 7 weeks ago, this is not your first infection. It might be your first recognized outbreak, but not your first infection and from the timing, it is not possible to know when you were infected, if you are infected.
3. If there are no lesions in the pubic area, you cannot shed from that area. However, you can still be shedding from the genital area even if you’ve never had an outbreak there.
4. If you have only received oral sex in your lifetime then you can be pretty clear that it is HSV 1, but it sounds like you have only had intercourse and condoms reduce the risk of herpes by only about 50% so no, if you’ve had intercourse, you can’t be certain. So did you have any testing done when you had these symptoms? Have you had any antibody testing done to see if you do have herpes?
5. see #3 for the answer to this question.
December 4, 2015 at 8:03 am #10847confusedandscaredParticipant
Ok, first of all, thank you so much for the answers. I have a few more questions.
1. So, as I read in a prior post, the only place that can shed asymptomatically is thin skin like the penile shaft. So if you have no lesions and your wearing a condom, why does it only increase protection by 50%. I figured it would be more.
2. I also forgot to mention, I did have an injury in my groin (scratched some really itchy jock itch and skin opened up a bit). This was right before my “outbreak”. Could this have played a role in bringing it about? In other words, can a cut or injury in groin area kickstart a breakout.
3. If this is a recurrence and not a primary infection, does that mean I most likely won’t have many more breakouts. This is the first time I’ve ever experienced this?
I appreciate your answers and everything you do. You have been extremely helpful. Thank you so much.
December 5, 2015 at 9:16 am #10852Terri WarrenKeymaster
I’m happy to answer your herpes questions, but I do think that you are jumping to conclusions that this is herpes without a real diagnosis. yes, it could be that but it could certainly be other things. I don’t think you should decide that you have herpes without a solid diagnosis, either a swab test of a lesion or a positive antibody test.
Yes, viral shedding in males happens from the shaft of the penis and the anus. The issue with the degree of protection from condoms is that sometimes condoms are not used for all of intercourse, sometimes they slip way down, sometimes they break, so their reliability is variable. And most studies find about 50% protection but I suppose it could be better if none of the above happens. Daily antiviral therapy also reduces transmission by half.
I doubt that scratching jock itch would initiate an outbreak. Could the jock itch be herpes or the supposed herpes be jock itch?
It’s hard to say about the frequency of outbreaks, but if you have herpes, which we don’t know at this point, you may well have infrequent recurrences.
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