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National Cervical Cancer Coalition


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 3:23 pm 

Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 2:50 pm
Posts: 2
I have genital HSV1 and I am concerned about transmitting my genital HSV1 to a new partner.

I have heard that if a person already has oral HSV1, they are very unlikely to contract genital HSV1. Is this true?

I'd really like to get some specific information, like some studies with the percentage of risk, rather than just knowing that it is "very unlikely". I have heard that about 90% of the population has antibodies for HSV1, from contracting it orally in most cases. If 90% of people would be protected from contracting this disease from me, it would really help me feel better about being sexually active.

I'm just not sure what to tell my potential partners. I know it is scary for them to hear that tranmission is a risk. If I knew the risk was very small and I had some good data to back that up, it would make us feel both feel better about having sex. I'd like to be able to ask my partner to get a blood test for HSV1 and tell him that he's very safe if he has the antibodies.

Btw, I've had this for 15 years, I haven't had an outbreak in 3 years, and I always use condoms, so I think that my risk of transmitting is very very small. Isn't it?


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 4:34 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 5443
Location: PA
In folks who are previously hsv1+ on serology - they usually never test + for hsv1 from genital lesions. It's almost exclusively hsv2. That's how we know that hsv1 orally protects against acquiring hsv1 genitally. Not a specific study that I"m recalling that says that specifically to refer you to - it's just what various studies have shown over the years.

90% of folks do not have hsv1 orally. Well not until you are in the old age home and waiting for the dude in black to come take you home that is. By the time we are in our 40's in the US about 60% of adults have hsv1 orally. We don't have stats for how many have it genitally - these just come from blood tests from folks who don't report having hsv1 genitally. It's mostly from the last NHANES study.

So what to tell potential partners? Well definitely you want them to get tested themselves because if they have hsv2 you can still contract it from them which would most likely result in an increase in ob's. If they already have hsv1 themselves - easy peasy!! If they are hsv1 negative then talk about the risk. Hsv1 genitally doesn't shed very often. You are more likely to transmit hsv1 from the oral area to the oral area than from the genital area to the genital area. I think you'll find that the majority of folks will be more than willing to take the small risk of contracting an already very common virus. Most folks find it's really not an issue. As I always say - what's herpes compared to bratty kids and a crazy ex spouse in the picture??

betsy

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 4:58 pm 

Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 2:50 pm
Posts: 2
In response to a previous post (http://www.ashastd.org/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=971) you said that "It's not common to contract hsv1 genitally with a well established oral hsv1 infection but it does happen now and then".

By saying "If they already have hsv1 themselves - easy peasy!!", you seem to be contradicing that.

Can you suggest a place where I might find more specific information on this topic?

I'd like to tell my partners what their risk is so that they can make an informed decision.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 6:22 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 5443
Location: PA
It can happen but it's not likely to happen. I think in 8 years of doing this I"ve heard of 2 folks having a definite hsv1 oral infection who then later on contracted hsv1 genitally. So it happens but not often enough to really worry about. most std practioners will say it never happens - I'm just a little less optimistic than they are. Just use common sense - when you have genital symptoms avoid sex. It goes a long, long way.

http://www.ihmf.org/journal/download/61Kinghorn(4).pdf

http://www.ihmf.com/guidelines/ratify/C ... ecurrences

Those are the 2 best articles out there on hsv1 genitally for additional reading.

betsy

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