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Cold Sores spreading to genitals
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Cold Sores spreading to genitals

About 1 year ago I contracted what appeared to be Herpes Symplex Virus from the girl I was seeing, though when I went to see a doctor she just gave me zovirax cream and didn't exactly tell me what it was. I had all the classic signs however for primary infection of the virus, I had fever blisters on my lips and inside my mouth, I was very sick and could not eat anything for over a week because it hurt to much. Since that time I have had two oubreaks of cold sores, each time they were located on the right side of my lips. The most recent outbreak was a month ago. Since that time the sore crusted over and fell off. However, a white discoleration at the site of the cold sore remains. My Question is this, since the cold sore has run its course and has for the most part been gone for a couple of weeks (with only this discoleration remaining), what are the odds of me spreading this to the girl I am now seeing. Furthermore, I have been reading on numerous websites that there is a good chance of me spreading this through oral sex, despite the fact that there are no visible symptoms. How accurate are these statements? Should I completely refrain from performing oral sex in fear of giving her genital herpes or am I being paranoid? I would appreciate your input, Thanks.
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The chance of spreading herpes when a cold sore is dried up is small.  When it's not visible altogether, it's smaller still.  Many millions of people have cold sores--it isn't possible to go through the rest of one's life without kissing other people.  The risk is low, even if not zero.  This refers to spread anywhere--lips or genitals. You should level with your new partners, but it's hardly a point of shame to have a cold sore.

Take care.

Dr. Rockoff
3 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
i do believe that is something like 6 weeks after the cold sore dissapears it is still contagious.
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Avatar_n_tn
I would have to say that a cold sore is infectious before, during and after it appears.  Believe me, I caught type 1 genitally from a cold sore on my partner who had NO signs at the time that there was a sore about to appear.

Therefore, I would ALWAYS advise that you wait until at least 5/7 days AFTER it has fully healed and gone before considering yourself no longer infectious.  Also, if you get the slightest idea that a cold sore is on it's way then refrain from ANY skin to skin contact with the infected area.  The herpes virus will invade the body through the most miniscule of tears in the skin.  

Hope this helps.

Angi
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