› Forums › Herpes Questions › Redness that never blisters
- This topic has 1 reply, 2 voices, and was last updated 8 months, 2 weeks ago by Terri Warren.
July 6, 2022 at 12:10 am #78023peanut4Participant
I hope you’re enjoying the retired life! Thank you for continuing to share your expertise.
– Female with a history of cold sores that occur about 2x (they usually occur back to back for some reason) every few years. They occur in the same area of my lip. I rarely get the tingle and my cold sores rarely hurt/itch. It just pops up.
– I’ve gotten a blood test (not sure what type) that confirmed cold sores.
-Sometimes, apart from my normal outbreaks, the lip area that is affected by cold sores gets redder than the rest of my lip.
-The redness lasts from a few minutes or hours to about a day.
-No raised areas/bumps/blisters/pain/sensitivity/tingling/itch are associated with this redness. It’s like it’s flushed but only in that area.
-I do not know what triggers these events (I do recall that once the redness occurred after eating something spicy but haven’t noticed a pattern), and they happen ~3-4x a year.
-I do not take antivirals on these occasions.
To describe my most recent experience, I noticed redness on my lip where my past cold sores have appeared. 2 hours after, the redness gets even more prominent. An hour after that, the redness starts to fade. 27 hours after, my lip is back to normal. If I hadn’t looked in the mirror, I’d have never noticed it. It just so happens that in this experience, I felt some malaise (my cheeks were flushed when this incidence happened, but cheek flushing doesn’t always occur) but the malaise was gone after a few hours.
I’ve wondered if this is a little cold sore / prodromal period that never blisters and my body’s immune system is able to overcome it.
Do you think in these instances I am contagious? (Or more contagious than usual, as I understand that I could always be shedding when not symptomatic)
I do have slight OCD but have been getting therapy for that. I’m not sure if this is overthinking.
Thank you so much.
July 8, 2022 at 12:35 pm #78032Terri WarrenKeymaster
It’s difficult to know if these might be aborted herpes outbreaks, but I kind of doubt it. However, if these concern you, I would check your lip before giving oral sex to anyone and if the redness is present, avoid giving oral sex until your lip looks normal.
Alternatively, you could have your lip swabbed using PCR during one of these episodes to see if it is positive. That would be a more accurate way to know if herpes is active on your lip at that time.
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