Sexually Transmitted Diseases/Do I have Herpes??

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Question
Redness
Redness  

The Small blisters
The Small blisters  
I am 22 years old. I am from Eastern Washington in the united states. I had this rash a few months back, and I applied Tinactin and it went away about 4 days later. About 2 days ago it came back, but this time with a cluster of small blisters. The blisters do not itch or feel sore. I have no flu like symptoms either. The skin on my penis is also flaky and dry. My gf and I have had unprotected sex, but I am her first and only partner.  I on the other have had many partners, but always wore protection. I know that doesn't protect you from herpes, but my gf had a colposcopy a few months after I had the first outbreak, and it came back negative. She hasn't had any of the same symptoms, and I have asked my previous ex, if shes had any also, and she said none what so ever. I've seen some of the images on google, and I am really worried I may have herpes. Please help me determine my next step to getting rid of this rash.

Answer
Hello Robert,
It looks like you still have some skin fungus.  Not herpes! Change from Tinactin (tolnaftate) to Micatin (miconazole) or Lamisil (terbenifine), and continue for at least a week beyond the resolution of the symptoms. Sometimes, tiny fluid filled blisters may be herpes, but they may also be related to eczema, a condition known as dyshidrotic eczema.

Stop stressing about it!

Good luck!
--mark

Sexually Transmitted Diseases

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Mark P. Behar

Expertise

Almost any question or concern about gay men's health issues, sexually transmitted infections, abnormal Pap smears, anal cytology (anal "Pap smears"), etc. There is no such thing as “d/d free” or “clean” (free of infection), so why do so many of us deceive ourselves into thinking that some people are indeed totally free from a potentially infectious disease, like HIV, herpes, hepatitis, syphilis, chlamydia, warts, gonorrhea, etc., just because they say so? Clinical laboratory tests are not perfect, and having a “negative” or “nonreactive” test does not mean that a person is free from infection. Perhaps at the moment the test was taken, the person was uninfected; or, perhaps, the test wasn’t sensitive enough to detect presence of the infection. There is really no way that anyone can determine that they are truly “disease free,” and there are over a hundred of infectious conditions that can be spread without your knowing anything. Rather than trying to “pre-screen” or “serosort” a potential sex-mate with deceptive questions that are impossible to know by today’s technologies, a wiser option may be to consider everyone infected with something, and either use appropriate protective measures (“safer sex”), or accept the responsibility and consequences of possibly “catching” something from someone who’s hotter than expected (pun intended!). There is much research that supports the contention that an HIV positive person reliably taking HIV medications, and having an undetectable viral load, presents a lower risk for transmission of HIV than people who may think or say they are HIV negative, but are not. Food for thought!

Experience

Family Practice PA since 1981; Volunteer Clinician for Brady East STD (BESTD) Clinic, Milwaukee, since 1977; answered STD questions submitted to their web site. Professionally lectured at national and regional Physician Assistant and Nurse Practitioner conferences, and at national gay & lesbian health conferences on topics including HIV/AIDS, herpes, hepatitis, STDs, human papilloma virus (the cause of venereal warts), abnormal Pap smears, gay and lesbian health issues, among others.

Organizations
Co-Founder, Lesbian, Bisexual, & Gay Physician Assistant Caucus of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, Inc.; American Academy of Physician Assistants; Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants; National Co-Chair (2012-16), National Association of Black and White Men Together: A Gay, Multiracial Organization for All People (NABWMT)

Publications
Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants (JAPA) Q Visions, Quarterly Newsletter of the NABWMT

Education/Credentials
Bachelor's of Arts, 1972 (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI) Graduate Credits Experimental Psychology, 1972-75 (Tulane University, New Orleans, LA) Physician Assistant, Bachelor's of Science, 1981 (George Washington University, Washington, DC); Masters in Physician Assistant Studies, 2000 (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE)

Awards and Honors
Colposcopy Recognition Award (CRA), the American Association of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology; Distinguished Fellow, Clinical Preceptor, American Academy of Physician Assistants; Fellow, Wisconsin Academy of Physician Assistants

Past/Present Clients
Brady East STD Clinic, Milwaukee, WI Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. (Martin Luther King Heritage Health Center), Dept. of Family Medicine and Early Intervention Program for HIV Infected Persons

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