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How long after having contact with someone with genital herpes can you get tested to find out if you caught it?

I recently had sex with a girl with genital herpes and we used a condom. However, the condom broke and she then decided to inform me that she has genital herpes. I’m wondering how long I have to wait to go take a test for it to be able to tell me even slightly if I have it or not?

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One Comment

  1. shadylady25 says:

    In the absence of symptoms, you need to wait 3-6 months before you can have a special blood test. Then you need to get a type-specific herpes blood test.

    There is no test you can have sooner – the blood test looks for antibodies to the virus, and it takes time to develop these. Any sooner than 3-4 months at the earliest and you would get a false negative even if you had caught it.

    If you don’t get symptoms, I wouldn’t go worrying too much in the meantime. Herpes isn’t actually that easy to catch. I am assuming the girl did not have current symptoms. Transmission rates in the absence of symptoms are LOW.

    If you had UNprotected intercourse several times a week with this girl, for an entire YEAR, and only avoided contact when she had visible symptoms, your risk per year would only be 10% or less if she had hsv-2, and about 2% if she had hsv-1. And that is over 100s of exposures.

    Look at it this way. My boyfriend had oral herpes hsv-1, which is actually more infectious than genital herpes. We avoided kissing and oral sex when he had a cold sore, but had frequent contact in between. It took me seven full years to catch it from him.

    Although it is possible to not develop symptoms when you have actually caught it, normally symptoms would appear within a week. Mine were pretty unmistakeable and painful.