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Herpes is there a test to find out?

(21 Posts)
Flumpbump Sat 11-Aug-18 13:26:26

I'm just filling my notes in and obviously it asks about all infections.

About 2 years ago I went to nurse with a really sore rash down there, she looked at it and said it's herpes without doing any tests.
In 2 years I've had the same rash twice, both times was after shaving and when dh had yeast infection.

Its possible it could be herpes because dh gets coldsores but hes never had genital sores apart from yeast infection which went away within days of using cream.

Is there a blood test or anything they can do to check because i haven't had a sore in around a year so there's nothing to swab

dementedpixie Sat 11-Aug-18 13:41:20

Could be herpes as cold sores can pass the herpes virus to the genitals during oral sex. Don't know if they can test without active sores though

Bibijayne Sat 11-Aug-18 13:56:23

I think they can do a blood test?

RowenaDedalus Sat 11-Aug-18 21:21:18

They only test active sores

Ohyesiam Sat 11-Aug-18 21:23:57

It’s really difficult to swab even from an active sore, but there is a reliable blood test for antibodies.

RB68 Sat 11-Aug-18 21:28:11

Go to the GP and ask, they really should have given you more information about it. In the mean time please tick yes and tell the midwife. It can be passed to a baby if there are active sores when you are delivering and it really isn't something you want baby to get in eyes or mouth or bottom

betterthanbutter Sat 11-Aug-18 21:33:02

There is a blood test for herpes antibodies. It won’t tell you though if the genital symptoms you had were herpes or not (unless the test is negative, then obviously it wasn’t), the only way to know if your genital symptoms are herpes is to have them swabbed when they are there.

If the blood test is negative, you have never acquired the herpes virus. If it is positive, then you have, but as your partner has cold sores you could have also got the virus around the mouth and not around your genitals. However, the antibody blood test won’t tell you that. It will just be either positive or negative.

Some doctors won’t do the test as the result isn’t always helpful. However in pregnancy they may do it, especially if you haven’t had a confirmed swab diagnosis.

If you are negative, you might want to avoid oral sex during your pregnancy. Picking up the virus for the first time during pregnancy isn’t good.

RowenaDedalus Sat 11-Aug-18 21:56:17

I could be wrong, but I don’t think the nhs perform the blood test for herpes.

Flumpbump Sat 11-Aug-18 22:28:24

I do avoid a lot of things now incase it is herpes. I stopped shaving and use hair removal creams, i eat a much healthier diet and avoid foods that can apparently trigger outbreaks. I avoid oral sex at all costs anyway lol

I understand the dangers of passing it to baby thats why I'm curious if there's a test, but I've written it down and will discuss with midwife. i do tell any healthcare provider (when appropriate) that I've been diagnosed with it but not had an outbreak in over a year. I've never even had a cold sore before so it came as a big shock to be told I had herpes.

ChardonnaysPrettySister Sat 11-Aug-18 22:30:11

Best to go to a GUM clinic.

Flumpbump Sat 11-Aug-18 22:40:53

That's why i had to see nurse at go, we don't have any clinics local itd take me over 2 hours on public transport each way and i have a toddler :/

ChardonnaysPrettySister Sat 11-Aug-18 22:46:42

Oh ok, that is a shame though.

Flumpbump Tue 14-Aug-18 13:07:30

I saw midwife today she said well treat it like i don't have unless I get any sores because its undiagnosed

Pinkvoid Tue 14-Aug-18 14:31:00

It is easily misdiagnosed. I have it and was diagnosed as having folliculitis the first time I had an outbreak. It was only during the second outbreak when I was in so much pain I couldn’t sit down, pee, sleep, walk and was just crying in absolute agony that it was properly diagnosed as GH at a GUM clinic the GP referred me to. The sores need to be active to get an accurate result. I don’t know if the NHS do a blood test but I don’t think they do.

It would be best to know whether you have it or not before delivery really as you need to take antivirals for a month leading up to the due date.

1Wanda1 Tue 14-Aug-18 15:04:13

There is a blood test which can be done at any time. It tests for the antibodies which are left in your blood after an active herpes outbreak. If you have the antibodies, you have the herpes virus. It can tell you whether you have type 1 or 2. One is the cold sore type, the other is the genital type. I know about this test because I had similarly vague advice from a STI clinic after being cheated on. I don't think the NHS offers the blood test. I paid for it privately.

1Wanda1 Tue 14-Aug-18 15:05:10

Herpes can be transmitted to the baby during birth and herpes infections can and do kill babies, so you need to find out for sure.

Starlings27 Tue 14-Aug-18 15:18:00

But only if you're having an outbreak at the time you give birth.

Flumpbump Tue 14-Aug-18 15:29:36

If i get any sores at all I will see the midwife and we can change birth plan. That's what I've been told to do because an ulcerative rash could a symptom of conditions not just herpes

1Wanda1 Tue 14-Aug-18 15:40:29

Starling it is possible to transmit the herpes virus without having open sores. You can have active virus without symptoms. This is often how genital herpes is transmitted, because most people probably wouldn't have sex with someone with visible open sores.

RowenaDedalus Wed 15-Aug-18 08:52:21

But 1wanda as far as I can tell the NHS only offer a c section if it is your first outbreak as otherwise your antibodies would have passed to the baby. Certainly I have been getting outbreaks during pregnancy and I’m getting the impression that even if there are active sores in labour they don’t see it’s necessary for a section.

1Wanda1 Wed 15-Aug-18 11:43:19

I have also read that some immunity passes to the baby in pregnancy if the first outbreak was historic before pregnancy. It's not clear to me how much "some" means though.

If I were in the position of even possibly having to give birth with herpes (as no one can tell when they will have an outbreak), I think I would just ask for a c section on other grounds. The NHS seems to be more amenable to giving a c section for reasons of phobia of childbirth and that sort of thing these days. I'd go with that and (hopefully) avoid the problem all together.

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