Sexually Transmitted Diseases/Vaginal burning, itching, cuts


I am 19 years old and I live in Florida. I have had numerous sexual partners, which makes me feel like a whore. I have  been diagnosed with HPV 2  years ago but have not seen anything since then. Ever since I have gotten the Nexplanon implant I have been having vaginal dryness and "paper cuts" on the opening of my vagina. I read that it's side effects are vaginal dryness, vaginal infections and so on. This past month my cuts have gotten worse- turning into hole like cuts along with the same paper cut looking things on the outside of my vaginal entrance and once above my urethra where I pee. My vagina burns kinda like and icy/hot burn regularly and I keep messing wiht the cuts to see what it might be causing dryness and irritation.
I had a yeast infection Aug. 25th and took a fluconazole but started to have reoccurring problems with my vagina. I got sick around Sept. 13th for 4 days and took some tylenol cold a flu pills. I just don't know if these are signs of Herpes or stress, or the birth control.
I'm just so stressed, so I went to the clinic today and my doctor said she has seen cuts like that that look like herpes. I was tested for a UTI and yeast infection and both were negative.. I had blood work done for HSV 1&2 and am waiting on the results back.

I am curious, since my birth control does not have estrogen if my vagina is getting infections and dryness. I don't know what to do and I have been so stressd out the past 3 weeks. What if this is herpes, anyone know?!

Hello Nikki,
The "paper cuts" you are experiencing, along with the dryness, etc., may be related to vaginal yeast, which sometimes is not easily observable using the microscope, which might account for an error in diagnosis ("false negative"). However the "sickness" you mentioned might be co-existing with an acute herpes infection.  Sometimes, herpes will cause such "paper cuts" as well as ulcerations ("holes").  The appropriate test for a definitive diagnosis of herpes is a swab for a DNA (NAAT) test, which can isolate the presence of herpes type 1 or 2.  The blood (antibody) tests are indirect.  IgG antibody will be positive if you've EVER had herpes. IgM may be positive if you have or had a very recent infection.  But it cannot say whether these particular lesions are indicative of herpes NOW, or just trauma from some other cause. STRESS does tend to trigger herpes infections, and stresses may be psychological stress, stress from a fever (however herpes may also cause a fever!), not enough sleep, menstrual cycle, vacation, family affairs, weddings, etc.

Good luck!

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Mark P. Behar


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!


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.

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)

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

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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