Some recent statistics indicate that a visual diagnosis of herpes is wrong 70% of the time. In other words, a visual diagnosis is no diagnosis. How much trouble is it to take a swab sample of an active sore and do a type-specific culture on it?
I'm surprised that zovirax/acyclovir cream is helpful if it's herpes. It's been shown to be very little help. The pills are much, much more effective since they get to the cellular level where the actual viral replication that is causing the outbreak is happening.
"Mom", have you tried taking antivirals when you get those symptoms? I find that if I take antivirals when I have the first clue that an OB is trying to get started, it cuts it off at the pass.