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MasterDoc, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 1611
Experience:  Emergency Physician for 20 years
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Is there a test for herpes even if you do not have symptoms

Customer Question

Is there a test for herpes even if you do not have symptoms and havent had an episode for 3 or 4 years? I first had a lesion in the vaginal area in 2002 and another lesion in 2003, I went to my doctor while the sore was still new, he took a sample for a culture. the results were negative for herpes...could it have been a false negative? havent had a lesion since 2003.
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  MasterDoc replied 9 years ago.

There is a blood test that could confirm if you've had herpes in the past. However it wouldn't be able to tell you if you have had the herpes infection in your mouth (quite common) or on the genitals.

look in particular at the section marked herpes tests.

Feel free to ask a follow-up question.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
I'm confused, HSV type 1 and 2 can both cause sores on the vagina...are there 2 different blood tests? the website on Herpes has a lot of info ty..I've never had a sore in or outside my mouth.
Expert:  MasterDoc replied 9 years ago.

Yes there are two different tests. But since either variety can exist in either the mouth or genitals the test won't tell you anything particularly useful.

Even if you don't remember having ever had a cold sore you probably still are positive for HSV. The vast majority of the population is positive.

This is why the blood tests really don't mean much and aren't used much.

And a BONUS is always appreciated.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
you said that blood tests really dont mean much and arent used, how do I get a definitive answer as to do I have herpes? I dont want to infect anyone... as I said yesterday, I havent had a lesion in 3 or 4 years.
Expert:  MasterDoc replied 9 years ago.

Well if you definitely had a herpes lesion on your genitals in the past then you still have it. It never goes totally away so it is always theoretically possible to infect a partner.

If you are not sure you have it there is no way to be sure until you get a new lesion on the genitals and get it seen and checked by an MD.

And a BONUS is always appreciated.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
I explained in my very first communication that I went to my doctor when I had a fresh lesion, he took a sample and had it tested, the results came back negative...that information wasnt addressed by "just answer"
Expert:  MasterDoc replied 9 years ago.

Forgive me I THOUGHT i had; there are false negative tests althought they are not common if the specimen is well taken. At this point there is no well t tell if you really don't have it or if the test was a false negative. other than wait and see if a new lesion develops.



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Customer: replied 9 years ago.
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