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Cold Sore transmission
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Cold Sore transmission

Dr. Rockoff,

      Over the years, I have been very, very careful when I have a cold sore not to kiss anyone until it has healed completely. The other day I kissed my wife (once) as I left for work. About an hour later I had an itchy, tingling feeling on my lip and knew I was getting a cold sore - I did shortly thereafter. I have heard all kinds of things dealing with asymptomatic shedding and being contagious a day before you actually get a cold sore etc. and was wondering if there is any validity to this? I am worried I might have given my wife the cold sore virus through that one kiss. Thank you for your answer.

                                    Henry
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It's possible, but still not likely.  Over the years, this has probably happened before--she's likely to already have been exposed to the virus.  In any case, there's nothing you can or need to do about it now.  I wouldn't be too concerned.  The incubation period is 5-10 days or so, by the way, so if it hasn't happened by then, you're in the clear.

Best.

Dr. Rockoff
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I recently had sex with someone and about a week later had bumps appear on my penis and I had sore throat.  After consulting with the doctor I was quickly diagnosed with Herpes before I even dropped my paints.  I went to the lab and gave blood to be tested for AID
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Thanks Dr. Rockoff - I guess I was under the assumption that you are contagious when you have the blisters and not before they appear, and then I read about this asymptomatic shedding which kind of scared me (after all it was just one quick kiss). It has been 5 days since I kissed her and no cold sore.

                                     Henry
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