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Herpes Doctors

Are you looking for excellent care from a knowledgeable herpes doctor? Did you know that Nurse Practitioners and Physician's Assistants care for the majority of herpes patients? Please send me your positive OR negative experiences with health care providers in your area. Keep reading because I have listed the qualities that "I" think health care providers should have when treating their patients that may or may not have herpes.

Good Healthcare Providers written by someone that has herpes: ME!!

There are many health care providers out there that will be able to help you find out whether or not you have herpes. What we don't want is a health care provider who is going to rush you through their office as if you were cattle being pushed through a field by a cowboy on a horse.

I am not planning on listing who the ďgoodĒ health care providers are any more because I think that it creates an unfair advantage in the medical community. There are many good providers out there that deserve a chance to be discovered. Plus, not listing the ďgood onesĒ will work towards keeping the lines of communication open between provider and patient. Besides, if only a few offices around the country get flooded with patients how fair is that actually going to be for the person thatís trying to get answers? Finally, since I canít guarantee the quality of the care from each individual provider then there is no point in listing them.

Instead, I want to encourage you not to be afraid to talk to providers in your area. There are good providers everywhere and they need to be given a chance to help you. You wonít know where they are until you take the time to look for them. Donít be afraid to talk about herpes with them. If they have a horrible bed-side manner turn them in to a higher medical authority and move on to the next provider because there are good ones out there that want to help you.

Here is "MY" definition of a really good health care provider when you are trying to find out what is going on with your body and whether or not you have herpes simplex virus:

Someone that actually knows what they are talking about when it comes to herpes and STDs. I have heard so many horror stories about how professionals are telling their patients that they can not spread herpes as long as there are no outbreaks present. That simply put is NOT true. The most recent Valtrex commercial that Iíve seen on television states that 70% of those that contracted herpes did so from a partner that didnít know that they had herpes in the first place. The other statistic I saw on another Valtrex commercial stated that 90% of those that have genital herpes donít know that they have it.

Someone that is willing to answer ALL of your questions no matter how ďsillyĒ or ďrelevantĒ the question as presented by the patient. In other words, if you want to know which type of HSV that you have as well as location it is important because it matters to you AND you have a right to know!! So many times I have heard about providers telling their patients that itís not really important to know the HSV type that they have. I think if itís important to the patient then it should be just as important for the provider to get them some real answers instead of a quick dismissal.

Someone that can and will test you properly for herpes. Since herpes is NOT included in the routine STD testing process itís important for you to ask specifically to be tested for herpes. If you have an outbreak that can be cultured hopefully your provider will be willing to see you right away so that they can run that form of testing immediately. Too many times providers will want you to schedule an appointment and it just doesnít work too well when you have to wait for too long to be seen. In fact, itís how most false negatives originate to begin with.

Someone that is willing to provide type specific herpes testing so that you will know which type you have if there are no sores or lesions that can be cultured. Not everybody has an outbreak that can be cultured and that is why itís important to have the right herpes testing done. In situations like this a type specific herpes blood test is in order. And if the provider is not up-to-date on such tests perhaps they are willing to do the research, learn, and bring themselves up to speed on what the latest herpes testing is these days.

Someone who will offer suppressive therapy to the patient that requests it, regardless of the frequency of their recurrences, or even if they are having recurrences. Since most new cases of herpes are transmitted from someone showing no symptoms, and suppressive therapy reduces shedding so dramatically, it should be used way more than it is now. The last time I checked, suppressive therapy reduced frequency of outbreaks as well as asymptomatic shedding. Isnít that a good thing and what good provider would ever be against THAT?

Someone who takes time to answer questions and offer support. In addition, a good herpes clinician will seek out answers when they don't have themselves. A decent herpes clinician is somebody that is willing to humble themselves if it means that they will learn something new from their patient too. A good health care provider is someone who ALWAYS diagnoses herpes by lab test, or confirms a clinical impression with a lab test. Looking at someone and telling them they have herpes by visual exam has a 20% error rate and isnít THAT too high?

Someone who realizes that not everything going on down there is always going to be herpes. Hopefully people are able to get a complete work up so that they can rule out other things such as jock itch, yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, etc. Over the years I have bumped into so many women that thought they were having a herpes outbreak and wound up believing that herpes outbreaks are supposed to be a constant every day occurrence. Does that sound right to you? It doesn't sound right to me at all.

Someone that is willing to try finding a dosage that will work for their patient knowing that everybody is different. Some people with herpes need more antivirals in order to keep the virus under control and others not so much. Also, if a patient would like to discuss an alternative therapy then perhaps the physician might be open to exploring those areas too. While the herpes antivirals are clinically proven to work the best for most people that have herpes simplex virus.. not everybody can take them for whatever the reasons might be. Flexibility and being open to do what is going to work for each person on a case by case basis is a good thing, is it not?

Thatís all that I have so far

If you can think of a quality that you are looking for in a good physician or health care provider that is not listed above feel free to write and tell me what that is so that I can list that positive quality above. This is how we are going to find the good doctors and health care providers that are out there. In my opinion, listing them by name is not going to make the situation better. Itís actually going to keep us from finding the rest of the good providers that are out there that do exist but donít happen to have an established name in the medical community. Eventually they will be found because word-of-mouth is everything.

I would also like to add that seventeen years ago when I was diagnosed with genital herpes I did quite a bit of research and thought that I knew exactly who the good health care providers were because of the horns that they tooted in the herpes community and all of the good works that they had accomplished on paper and in lectures. I have since realized that the ones that toot the loudest arenít necessarily the most humble in nature and may not have as much time for you in the end. So take that into consideration when choosing your health care provider because who you know and how popular you are in the medical community does not always cut it either.

Attempting to find a diagnosis or answer as to what you have on the Internet is not a good idea. Itís also not a good idea to have someone who youíve never talked with in person or on the phone decipher your test results. You need to have YOUR doctor decipher your test results. Talk to YOUR doctor and talk to YOUR lab because they are the ones that should know best what YOUR situation is. As patients we donít always do the best job of explaining what has taken place with us and everyone's situation is different which is why no one no matter how qualified they are should be attempting to diagnose, treat, or decipher YOUR stuff on the Internet.

It seems that I too am learning new things every day. I used to speak quite highly of the Herpes Specific Western Blot at the University of Washington. I guess itís not the ďGoldĒ standard in herpes testing that we once thought it was. Sure, itís still one of the best tests that you can have done BUT itís not a test that doesnít ever have itís own flaws. In fact, the people that used to say it is the ďGoldĒ standard are no longer telling their patients that any more. At least not from what I have seen lately. Therefore, be proactive and do some research so you will be able to find a health care provider with a positive disposition that is going to help you get the answers that you deserve.

What type of doctor should you see if you are trying to find out if you have herpes OR need somebody to fill your herpes antiviral prescription meds? What about alternative therapies? These are excellent questions that deserve honest answers from real people that actually have the virus and know what to do.

Do you have a health care story you want to share? If so, send it to me because I would be more than happy to post it for you! You can even do so anonymously if that is what makes you feel more comfortable. Sometimes it really does help to put things in writing in a way that allows you to be free to vent. My posting it on my site winds up #1 helping you to get the experience off your chest and #2 helping those not to feel so alone in their health care experiences that they have run into. Send me your story via e-mail for posting but be clear as to what your intentions are in the subject line OR within your note.

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