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Ask Dr. Jerry E Your Own Question
Dr. Jerry E
Dr. Jerry E, Doctor (MD/DO)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1085
Experience:  1 yr experience family medicine (adult and children), emergency medicine for five years
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I am a 32 year old male who had unprotected sex 17 days ago

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I am a 32 year old male who had unprotected sex 17 days ago with a woman. 10 days after the encounter, I noticed three small red bumps on the shaft of my penis. They looked like cysts and were not blisters. They did not itch and were not painful, and I had no burning sensation while urinating or any other classic herpes symptom. When squeazed, puss would come out similar to a pimple or pussed cyst. The very next morning I went to my doctor and was tested via urine and blood for gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphillis, HIV, and Herpes 1 and 2. Results came back negative. My doctor also performed a PCR DNA test for Herpes 1 and Herpes 2, both of which came back negative. Two of the three bumps scabed and went away after 6 days (they scabbed probably because I popped them, which I know is bad), and the third went away with no scabbing. I have had a history of difficuly acne all over my body (it is still an issue for me today) and have gotten cysts on the genitals before. I actually have one on my torso now and had one on my right arm last week. I had tested negative for all common stds (including herpes) 6 months prior and had no partners prior to the encounter. I visited a dermatologist today who examined the last remaining bump and she said she was 99% sure it wasn't herpes. How confident can I feel about not having genital herpes 1 or 2 at this point?
Hello, this is Dr. E. Greetings from New York! I'm so glad you posted your question for me to answer, and I aim to provide you with accurate info

What did the doctor suggest it was if she could be so sure it wasn't herpes?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
She thought they could be sebaceous cysts or an allergic reaction
Did you tell her about your recent sexual activity?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Yes, I told her everything that I wrote above in my question.
Okay, well I don't know what other evidence she based her findings on, but I am not convinced of her diagnosis. Especially considering your recent sexual activity. And since herpes isn't always immediately present in blood sample, you may have the disease unknowingly. you may have contracted the virus recently, but it could take a period of time before it shows up on blood tests.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I think she was basing her diagnosis on the negative PCR DNA swab test that was taken within 24 hours of the bumps appearing. I realize that the blood tests are likely useless at this point, but my understanding is the PCR DNA swab has 99.99% sensitivity.
The PCR test is not often done on skin sores, but it is best for testing spinal fluid, for those rare cases in which herpes may cause an infection in or around the brain. PCR tests performed on skin sores are not as accurate as other fluids.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I see. I neglected to mention that my partner claims to have been tested for HSV 1 and 2 after our encounter and was clean. Assuming she is being truthful (and I have every reason to believe her), do you think the three bumps could be the result of some other kind of infection?
There is always the possibility of it being something as simple as ingrown hairs / infected follicles. Or your doctor's assesment could be accurate. I'm just not convinced of it not being herpes, especially because herpes may not show up on initial blood tests
Dr. Jerry E and 3 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Understood, thank you. I will definitely get a blood test again in three months to verify
That would be best. I wish you the best