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Started itching and irritation on vaginal area. Chances of having STD after vaginal intercourse?

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Practicing since : 2003
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I had submitted a question a couple of weeks ago and had received a reply. I viewed the reply and then sent a follow-up message and question; which was answered.

I now have a new question, but first I should explain the nature of my previous question:

I had written before to inquire about whether or not I could have contracted an STD. About three weeks ago I had engaged in vaginal intercourse while wearing a condom. About a week afterward I had experienced some occasional tingling and other sensations in the genital area. For the most part this consisted of a feeling of irritation on one side of my penis. Careful visual examination of my penis and scrotum did not reveal any bumps or lesions resembling the sores associated with herpes.
The doctor who had answered my question had said that if I had used a condom, I should be OK. He asked me if I was experiencing any pain while urinating, had a fever, swollen glands, lesions or open sores. I replied no. In his follow-up reply he said that it sounded like everything was OK.

Just to be sure, however, I decided to go to a local clinic to be tested for STD's. I had a urine test done to check for Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and any urinary-tract or bladder infections. That test came back negative the same day. I also had a blood test done for HIV, Syphilis, and Herpes. That was 8 days ago. When I called the clinic, the doctor told me that the test was negative for HIV and Syphilis; but that I had tested positive for Herpes-2. I'm going back to the clinic this Saturday for more tests to be absolutely certain. The doctor said that it was possible that the test had yielded what he called a "false positive". If I do have Herpes-2, the doctor added that I might now be experiencing an outbreak even though I may have contracted it much earlier. He asked me if I recently have noticed any sores or lesions around my lips. I said that I have not noticed any.

As I said before, as far as I can tell I have not had any fluid-filled blisters that have broken over and formed scabs anywhere on my genitals. I have experienced some occasional mild itching and even what feels like irritation from chafing.

Right now the weather where I live has been extremely hot and humid and I have read articles online, stating that it's possible in these conditions to develop a fungal infection in the genital area that could often be mistaken for an STD.
Posted Tue, 21 Aug 2012 in Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Answered by Dr. Rohit Batra 18 hours later
Dear patent
Thanks for your query.
Herpes test comprises of antibodies that is IgM which is positive in recent infection hang IgG which if positive suggests an old infection.
Also Hsv 1 and 2 both can cause genital as well as labialis herpes.
People can have raised titres of these antibodies without having symptoms and there is nothing ti worry.
Treatment is o only required if lesions are seen.
Funeral infections like candida is also part of STD profile but can occur otherwise also and is readily treatable .

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Started itching and irritation on vaginal area. Chances of having STD after vaginal intercourse? 2 hours later
Thank you for your reply.

My doctor called me today to let me know that he had been reviewing my medical records. The previous time when he had tested me for herpes (which I believe was in the spring of 2011) he had used the antibodies test which is more reliable. That test was negative. The test I had done last week was a more routine test which had yielded a positive result. He thinks, however, that this recent test had produced a false positive; so I'm going to go back on Saturday for a more comprehensive test. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it will yield a negative result.

As part of the re-hiring process for my current job; I had to have an HIV test done back on May 9. That test also came back negative. In the past 7 years I've had just as many HIV tests and all were negative. I'm not sexually active very often; but when I am I try to practice safe sex with female partners. Since I've been over here there were only two occasions when I inadvertently had unprotected vaginal intercourse and received unprotected oral sex. When I was tested later on for multiple STD's, however, the tests were all negative. During any other sexual encounters I might have had, I had used a condom each time.

As I said before, to the best of my knowledge I have not experienced an outbreak of Herpes-2; in which there were fluid-filled blisters or bumps that subsequently broke and left behind open, painful sores. I know, however, that some people with Herpes-2 may be asymptomatic.

Hopefully I'll know more when I go back to the clinic this Saturday; but what I seem to have been experiencing during the past few weeks was occasional inflammation, possibly due to friction from underwear coming in contact with the skin and also from pubic hairs rubbing the skin as well. I do appear to have a lot of fordyce spots, with hair protruding from them; as well as a few papules on the glans area.

If the next Herpes test does turn out to be positive; then I have questions on how to continue living as normal a life as I can under those circumstances:

Can Herpes-2 be spread through casual contact; such as hugging someone while fully-clothed, or by shaking hands? If I have Herpes-2, with no signs of any oral blisters, do I need to worry about using eating utensils that may be used later by others? Will normal dish-washing with hot water and detergent kill any Herpes-2 virus, or do dishes need to be sanitized with a solution of chlorine bleach and water?

What about things like linen, towels, and underwear? If I should experience an outbreak and my genitals come into contact with these items, will normal laundering with hot water and detergent kill the virus so that it won't spread to others? Would I have to avoid things like using someone else's shower or bathtub, or swimming in a public swimming pool?

I've read that, if I should experience an outbreak I should avoid touching the genital areas until after any sores have healed over. What about when I have to urinate? If my hands do come into contact with the infected area, but I wash them immediately with soap and warm water for a full minute; will that prevent the virus from infecting my hands or any surfaces I touch afterwards?

I'm hoping that the test I get on Saturday will be negative; but I'm feeling kind of paranoid. If I do have it I'm going to be afraid to touch anyone or anything. I'm a teacher and live and work in South Korea. I work around kids all day. If I have Herpes-2; am I threat to the public at large?

I had read online that South Korea does not carry any of the prescription drugs used to treat Herpes 1 or 2... but I find that hard to believe. The clinic that I've been to works very closely with the U.S. Military personnel who are stationed in Seoul, and provides diagnostic STD testing to service members and their families.

The one thing I'm worried about is that if I am diagnosed with Genital Herpes, that my work visa will be cancelled and I'll be sent back to the U.S. I know that happens in cases where a foreigner is diagnosed with HIV. In South Korea, if anyone (Korean or Foreign) is found to be HIV-positive; they are immediately documented by the local health authorities and are closely monitored. I've read, though, that most countries do not require cases of Herpes to be reported by health officials. It's HIV and TB that seem to be the big concern.
Answered by Dr. Rohit Batra 5 hours later
Dear Patient,
Thanks for your detailed follow up query.
HSV-! or 2 can be transmitted by kissing in caes of herpes labilis as seen in mothers kissing infants. Now in most such cases only titres come positive and not clinical picture of herpes is seen.
Herpes doesnot spread by hugging, shaking of hands and only spreads if the lesion comes in contact with some person or mucosal fluids come in contact with some person then the chances of infection increases though it is not neccessary that the infection will take place.
The chances of infection with an unprotected intercourse will always remain though the chances are much more when a pperson is having lesions.
Once infected with herpes, chances of new episodes always persist and there is no medicine that can make one free from herpes for life.


Dr.Rohit Batra
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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