Can Hsv2 Be Transmitted Orally Mouth To Mouth
You may want to know odds about transmitting the same type to a new place on your body. Almost all autoinoculation occurs during and around the time of the first infection. Once a good immune response to the virus has been mounted autoinoculation if very rare. If it was easy, we would see small children who get cold sores transferring the virus to their genital often, which we never see.
Learn More About Living With Genital Herpes
Worried you might have herpes? Our guide to HSV-1 and HSV-2 covers almost every aspect of living with herpes, from prescription medicine to over-the-counter treatments, the signs and symptoms of the virus, herpes statistics and more.
If youre concerned that you may have caught genital herpes from a partner, be sure to read our guide to the signs and symptoms of genital herpes. And if you’re interested in getting tested for herpes, we have you covered there, too.
This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Learn more about our editorial standardshere.
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How Do You Tell Someone You Have Herpes
The hardest part of telling your partner may be deciding how to broach the subject. The specific words and phrases you use will depend on what kind of relationship you’re building. In general, though, don’t stress too much about having herpes. Your partner may even divulge that they also have herpes. And if they have the same type of the virus as you, they can’t get “reinfected,” Dr. Baldwin stated.
You could start the conversation by mentioning cold sores, then move into the subject of herpes. You could also start by saying you want to be honest in the relationship, or that you want to discuss safe sex. “It can be a very difficult conversation to have, but you should be honest and straightforward,” Dr. Baldwin recommended.
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If You Have Genital Herpes Can You Donate Blood
Before discussing whether you can donate blood when you have herpes, we need to answer the question: Can herpes be transmitted through blood donation?
Previously, blood collection facilities allowed herpes carriers to donate blood as long as they did not have an active infection. Thats because many believed that herpes could spread only during intercourse or via direct skin-to-skin contact.
However,recent studies suggest that herpes may spread via blood transfusions, regardless of whether the infected has an active infection. Since there isnt enough evidence to support this theory, many facilities still accept blood from herpes carriers.
How Are Genital Herpes Diagnosed
Other STIs, like syphilis, cause similar symptoms. In addition to a physical exam, your healthcare provider will take a fluid sample from the blisters to test for the herpes virus. If your blisters are healed or you dont have blisters, a blood test can check for HSV-2 antibody, a marker that shows you have been exposed to the virus.
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I Had Lesions When I Was Evaluated But My Culture Was Negative Does This Mean That I Dont Have Herpes
Not necessarily. Although lesions can be caused by something other than herpes, false negative herpes tests can occur if the samples are not taken appropriately, if there is a long transport time between the clinic and the laboratory, or if cultures were taken late in the course of the lesions. Lesions that occur early in the course of a herpes outbreak are much more likely to have positive cultures than cultures taken after the lesions crust over.
Do The Symptoms Of Genital Herpes Return
The symptoms of genital herpes may reappear from time to time. This is because once the herpes virus is acquired, it stays permanently in the body. Most of the time it remains inactive, but every so often it may reactivate and cause another outbreak.
Each individual is different some people never have a recurrence others may have recurrences several times a year. However, recurrent outbreaks are usually shorter and less severe than the first herpes episode.
Certain events or situations can trigger recurrences, and you may be able to help your partner avoid or reduce the trigger factors, which may include stress at work or home, fatigue, ill health, loss of sleep, friction due to sexual intercourse, and menstruation in women.
If your partner has frequent or severe episodes of genital herpes, or if the recurrent outbreaks are causing a lot of anxiety for your partner, then he or she may benefit from suppressive therapy , which prevents or reduces recurrences.
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How Effective Is Medication At Preventing Infection
If you have genital herpes, you will probably be somewhat less likely to infect your partner if you use antiviral medication for prevention. The medications used for this purpose include aciclovir, famciclovir and valaciclovir. They must be taken every day over a long period of time, though. One study showed that over a period of eight months,
- 4 out of 100 people became infected when the partner with the virus took a placebo, and
- 2 out of 100 people became infected when the partner with the virus took antiviral medication every day.
These couples were also advised to use condoms as well but many didn’t use them consistently. So its not clear whether taking antiviral medication can lower the risk of infection even further if you always use condoms anyway, or whether using condoms is just as effective on its own.
Whether or not you would like to use preventive medication is ultimately an individual decision. Many factors can play a role, such as how long you or your partner have had the infection, how frequent and severe the outbreaks are, whether you are male or female, the frequency of sexual contact and whether you use condoms.
Can Genital Herpes Cause Other Problems
For most women, genital herpes does not usually cause serious health problems.
Women with HIV can have severe herpes outbreaks that are long-lasting. Herpes also may play a role in the spread of HIV. Herpes sores can make it easier for HIV to get into your body. Also, herpes can make people who are HIV-positive more likely to spread the infection to someone else.
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How Big Is The Risk Of Infection
The likelihood of being infected with genital herpes during sex depends on many factors, including how often you have sex, whether and how frequently you use condoms, and how long your partner has already been infected. Someone who has had the virus for a long time is less contagious than someone who has just been infected. In general, women have a higher risk of becoming infected than men. Having other sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV also increases the risk of transmission.
In studies with couples where one partner had genital herpes, the other partner became infected within one year in 5 to 10% of the couples. The people in these studies only rarely used condoms, though and if they did, it was mostly during an outbreak. One of these studies showed that infection occurred in an estimated 1 out of 1,000 sexual acts.
Talking To Your Partner
Talking to your partner about your herpes condition helps to develop trust, improves the relationship, and makes regular use of condoms more likely.
When you talk to your partner, youâll find out if theyâre one of the people who understand the risk of getting herpes and are OK with it or if theyâre in the group of people who want the most protection possible.
You should ask your partner to get tested for herpes. Most people have never been tested for herpes because this isnât a routinely ordered test even if a âfull STD panelâ is requested.
A type-specific herpes test is necessary. If your partner is positive for the same virus type, you wonât need to use protection.
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How Can You Avoid Genital Herpes
Most women get genital herpes through sexual contactwith a person who has herpes sores. You can get thevirus without having sex. To avoid infection:
- Avoid skin-to-skin and sexual contact.
- Have safer sex:
- Reduce the number of sexual partners.
- Condoms, when used correctly, can reduce therisk of getting genital herpes. Each time you have sexuse a condom :
- Before vaginal sex
- Before oral sex
Should You Tell A Partner You Have Herpes
Disclose your HSV status to anyone you’re getting involved with. “I encourage everyone to share their diagnosis with their partners so that everyone can make the healthiest decisions for themselves,” Dr. Baldwin said.
You should also inform your partner about your herpes status for legal reasons. “There are so many lawsuits of people suing someone else for giving them herpes,” said Terri Warren, ANP, a nurse practitioner at Westover Heights Clinic and spokesperson for the American Sexual Health Association. By not telling your partner you have herpes, they lack the information needed to protect their health.
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Does Herpes Need To Be Treated
Treating herpes simplex symptoms may not be necessary. Herpes simplex infections clear up even if no treatment is given. But treating genital herpes can be helpful particularly if there are severe symptoms. Some people are affected more than others. See below for the rare occasions when it can be serious.
Consult a doctor about any of the following symptoms:
- tingling or itching around the genitals
- pain when peeing
- unusual vaginal discharge
The World Health Organization describes the risk of the herpes virus passing to a newborn during childbirth. Although this is rare, people who are pregnant and have herpes should let their doctors know.
Using a condom or another barrier method of protection during sex reduces the risk of the virus transmitting. It is also a good idea to avoid sharing sex toys with someone who has herpes.
Several online companies offer STI testing kits, including:
- EverlyWell: This company sells tests for chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, herpes, and HIV.
- LetsGetChecked: This company sells tests for several common STIs, and it provides prescriptions at no extra cost if a test result is positive.
- PriortitySTD: This company returns results within 3 days.
Anyone with a positive test result should contact a healthcare professional.
How Common Is Herpes
The prevalent statistics you encounter in drug commercials, sex ed, and PSAs are inconsistent and often confusing. Thats because herpes infections are much more complicated than we paint them in our SNL sketches and stand-up routines.
Heres the best statistic Ive seen. Its from ProjectAccept.org:
Around 75% of Americans carry HSV 1 or HSV 2 somewhere on their body. That virus can be transmitted to any surface of someone elses body, via physical contact. If it does transmit, theres an ~80% chance that they wont recognize any symptoms from the infection. However they, too, will retain the virus for life and be contagious.
Thats a lot to parse, but boil it down to this: far more than 1 in 6 Americans between the age of 14 and 49 have HSV-2. 1 in 6 means that if youve had three sexual partners in your life, then theres a 50:50 chance that one of them has had herpes and an even greater chance that one of them has had a partner with herpes.
So, when I tell you that your partner disclosing to you that sheand therefore maybe youhave herpes, I really mean that its not that earth-shattering. Not just compared to everyone you know, but compared to your own life up to this point. Whats unique about this situation is that one of you knows and is talking about it openly.
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Case #6 I Was Careful But I Still Transmitted Herpes
Kate and James have been together for a year. Kate is positive for HSV-2 that she got from a past partner. She has had only a few outbreaks and for the last five years has not had any symptoms.
Being a very ethical person, Kate informed James that she was positive for herpes. They decided to follow common-sense precautions:
- The wouldnât have sex when Kate has an outbreak
- They would have only protected sex
- Kate would take daily antiviral medication to reduce the risk of transmission
Despite these precautions, James recently had his first outbreak. Kate feels embarrassed and guilty about hurting James.
Theyâre both puzzled about why he got it when they followed so many precautions.
James got herpes from Kate despite the precautions they followed.
Dr. Fâs Explanation
- Transmission is possible even when precautions are followed
- Precautions only reduce the chance of transmission they donât eliminate it
- 50% reduction from antiviral suppressive medication
- 50% reduction from using protection
Treatment The First Time You Have Genital Herpes
You may be prescribed:
- antiviral medicine to stop the symptoms getting worse you need to start taking this within 5 days of the symptoms appearing
- cream for the pain
If you have had symptoms for more than 5 days before you go to a sexual health clinic, you can still get tested to find out the cause.
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Can You Donate Blood If Youre Hiv Positive
While its true that some infections are transmissible through blood transfusions, and the risk is usually very low, its important to understand that this is a rare occurrence. The most common STDs that are transmissible through blood transfusions include HIV , Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C, syphilis, HTLV-1 and other viral pathogens such as West Nile Virus.
Transmission of STDs through blood transfusions is very rare because the screening process for donors includes questions about your medical history as well as testing for infectious diseases like HIV/AIDS. In fact, according to Donate Life America: Blood donations in the U.S. are currently screened for more than 60 different infectious agents at our nations blood banks and transfusion centers but there is no test available today that can detect all possible infectious agents.
Blood banks screen for some STDs before you are allowed to donate blood.
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High Blood Pressure Or High Cholesterol: Can I Donate
High Blood PressureAs long as your blood pressure is 180/100 or below at the time of donation and you are feeling well, you can donate. Medications for high blood pressure do not disqualify you from donating.
High CholesterolHigh cholesterol levels do not disqualify you from donating. You can also donate if take medication to control your cholesterol.
Oklahoma Blood Institute screens for both of these and notifies donors of their results.
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Be Upfront Well Before You Have Sex
One of the hardest things about dating with herpes is deciding when to disclose your diagnosis to your partner. Although I generally try not to speak in absolutes, it is always a better idea to do so before you have sex. That way, your partner can make an informed choice about what risks they are and are not comfortable taking.
If you wait to tell your partner that you have herpes until after youve had sex, the revelation may feel like a betrayal. You will have denied them the opportunity to make an informed decision about risk. You may also have implied that your herpes diagnosis is more important than the other things they find attractive about you.
If someone is really interested in you before you tell them you have herpes, they probably will be afterward as well. It just helps to tell them early. That makes it less likely that theyll feel exposed and/or betrayed.
How early? You dont have to do it on the first date. The timing really depends on the people involved. If youre worried about how your partner might react, talk to them about it in a safe place.
You could bring it up over dinner when youre getting near the going home together phase. Or you could have the talk while youre out for a walk, and perhaps a make-out session.
When you do have the talk, its best to be straightforward about it. You have nothing to be ashamed of.
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- Departamento de Infectología, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, México DF CP 14000, MexicoAffiliationsDepartamento de Infectología, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, México DF CP 14000, Mexico Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México and Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, Mexico
- Yolanda Lopez-VidalAffiliationsDepartamento de Infectología, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, México DF CP 14000, Mexico Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México and Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, Mexico
- Rosa Isabel AmiebaAffiliationsDepartamento de Infectología, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, México DF CP 14000, Mexico Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México and Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, Mexico
- Mauricio HernándezAffiliationsDepartamento de Infectología, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, México DF CP 14000, Mexico Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México and Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, Mexico
J Infect Dis.
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