HIV - Prevention Expert Forum
Nowhere Else To Turn....
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This forum is limited to prevention of HIV and to safe sex in general. All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Nowhere Else To Turn....

DR. I really have no where else to turn. I am 17 and cant tell my parents and to embarrased to talk about my worry with my friends. I need a Dr.'s response to put me at ease.

My HIV and STD worries. I am really worried about HIV but also worried about STD's. Can I also get herpes, etc as I have been told STD's can be contracted from just skin to skin contact and about 12 days after the incident I developed itchy genital region. This occured when I got a lap dance at a strip club in New Zealand.

1. A finger insertion into her vagina. I simply put my finger in her vagina for a second and then removed it. Vaginal fluid was felt on my finger after removal. No known scrathes or cuts.

2. Massaged clitoris with right hand fingers, no insertion but worried about vaginal fluid traces or possibly blood traces and then me directly touching my penis 30 seconds later with these hands which may have had fluid or blood traces on it.

After massaging the clitoris with my left hand for say 30 seconds to a minute, I then put my finger inside her. Vaginal fluid felt on this finger and then lets say 30 seconds later I touched/rubbed my penis for about 30 seconds with my left hand which I previously massaged her clitoris with (worried about vaginal fluid and possible blood traces on these fingers) I also breifly touched my penis with my right hand that previously had vaginal fluid from fingering. Since it was a lap dance with heavy grinding (my clothes on) her vagina could have been irriated and could have had blood traces. What are the chances that vaginal fluid possible blood traces on my fingers could have entered through my penis when I touched it due to possible abrasions or redening during lap dance when I touched it. No cuts on penis but may have been tender.

I keep asking myself if there were traces of blood/vaginal fluid on my fingers and then I directly touched my penis about 30 seconds later how is this this not a risk? I am really worried about HIV but worried about STD's as about 12 days after the incident I developed itchy gentals. Thank you so much
Tags: vaginal
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239123_tn?1267651214
Relax. You clearly have overreacted to all the scary news given to young people today in health classes etc, especially in communities where politics are dominated by the religious right or other conservative viewpoints. The risks of STD and HIV are far lower than you seem to think.  Most important, no STDs are transmitted by hand-to-genital contact; simply not a realistic risk at all.  This is regardless of cuts or abrasions on the hands, genitals, etc.  (OK, there is some theroretical small risk of things like herpes.  But in 30+ years in a busy STD clinic with 14,000 patient visits per year, I have never seen a case.)  Further, itchy genitals is not an STD symptom.

Safe sex means choosing partners wisely and using condoms for vaginal or anal sex.  Oral sex is generally low risk, and you can bring that to zero risk by using condoms.  Other than that, you simply do not need to worry about STD.  Don't lose sleep over kissing, petting, or hand-genital contact.

Most likely there are resources for you to speak with knowledgeable professionals without your parents knowing, espcially if you are in the US.  Call your local health department; or Planned Parenthood; or a community clinic. In every state, there are laws that allow health care providers to provide care to teens for STD issues without getting parents' consent, and most such clinics will provide initial visits or such advice at no cost and totally confidentially.  You can also look for a local STD/AIDS hotline; or telephone the American Social Health Association (www.ashastd.org).  Personal advice from such sources will be a lot better than anything anybody can do online, including me.

Good luck-- HHH, MD
10 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Dr. This has caused a major impact in my life, sleep, school, friends, etc...

So you would say absolutely no HIV testing is required?
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239123_tn?1267651214
Testing might be a good idea to help convince you that you don't have HIV, ie for anxiety relief, but it is definitely not recommended on the basis of the non-risk exposure events you describe. But testing probably won't be enough. Most people with the emotionally driven concerns you express end up still believing they have HIV, despite the test results. Just read any 10-20 randomly selected threads, or use the search function to look for "HIV anxiety". You likely will need counseling to figure out why you are so laser-beamed on HIV despite its impossibility.

I won't have any further comments on this thread, unless/until you report back that you are getting professional advice you need. See my reply above about places to get that.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello Dr. I acknowledge I have a irrational fear about HIV. I even had a scare at the dentist. I am now seeking help with the support of my parents. I told them... Regarding Herpes you said it is theoritcal, but I have been searching on the net (maybe I shouldnt do that) and it seems that it can be spreas quite easily. About 10 days after the incident I developed an itchy gential (genital) region has almost gone away and no other symptoms. But if I was rubbing her cllitoris region and then 30 seconds later touched my genitals couldnt I easily get it. No im worried about herpes as HIV doesnt seem possible after your response. Your information would be appreciated.

"Herpes is most easily spread when a sore is present, but, it is also often spread at other times too. Some people notice itching, tingling or other sensations before they see anything on their skin. These are called "Prodromal Symptoms" and they warn that virus may be present on the skin. Herpes is most likely to be spread from the time these first symptoms are noticed until the area is completely healed and the skin looks normal again.


One kind of complication involves spreading the virus from the location of an outbreak to other places on the body by touching the sore(s). The fingers, eyes, and other body areas can accidentally become infected in this way. Preventing self-infection is simple. Do not touch the area during an outbreak. If you do, wash your hands as soon as possible. The herpes virus is easily killed with soap and water"

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239123_tn?1267651214
What didn't you understand about my last reply?  "I won't have any further comments on this thread, unless/until you report back that you are getting professional advice you need. See my reply above about places to get that."

Trust me, the risk of herpes from the exposures you describe is zero for all practical purposes.

It is obvious that you will ALWAYS have additional questions; i.e., my replies simply are not going to resolve your anxieties.  You must see someone in person.  Therefore, I definitely will delete any further comments/questions from you.  This is in your best interest  Call it tough love.

HHH, MD  
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Avatar_m_tn
I honestly think it's irresponsible for you to tell people there's no risk of STDs from hand-to-genital contact, when genital fluids are used before contacting the other person's genitals. I acquired gonorrhea through this contact, so either my culture test was a false positive (doubtly, esp cause i had symtpoms) or I actually got gonorrhea from a stripper rubbing herself and then touching my urethra. It happened to me, not to say it happened to this guy, but IT CAN HAPPEN...chances are low however.
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239123_tn?1267651214
Thanks for the thoughts, but I stand by my advice about hand-to-genital transmission and will not be changing it.

First, your exposure was atypical, with massage of secretions directly into your urethra--an unusual sexual practice that undoubtedly does not apply in the vast majority of cases.  Second, I never said hand-genital transmission cannot occur; I say only that it does not occur with measurable frequency.  (Notice my reply to the question above, "no realistic risk", not "zero risk".)  Third, the occurrence of rare events does not mean that general advice should be changed.  You are the only apparent case I have encountered in 30+ years as an STD specialist, which itself proves how rare this is.  Do you tell someone not to visit a zoo because a bear once escaped and ate someone?

HHH, MD
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Avatar_m_tn
Ok, you did not make the distinction between my exposure and a regular hand-to-genital exposure when I asked you my concerns regarding HIV. You simply told me I had nothing to worry about. Does my "specific, unusual" exposure put me at a higher risk for HIV, especially since I contracted gonorrhea?
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Avatar_n_tn
Tommy, Your answer is more logical.  I'm going through the same problem trying to find if gonorea of chlymedia exist.  I had a bad symptom but all the tests were Negative so far at 3 1/2 and six weeks.  I heard Chlymedia and Gonorea are difficult to detect.  What test did you use?  I'm sick of DR. HHH telling people no all the time but not providing that there is possibility for certain types of disease if hand or genital secretion comes in contact and what is the best way to test for this diseases.  Email me at yahoo_1007***@**** if you have any information.
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239123_tn?1267651214
john, if you are "sick" of my advice, why do you keep reading the forum?  The notion than gonorrhea and chlamydia are hard to diagnose is wacko, by the way.  

Tommy, of course getting gonorrhea means your HIV risk was elevated.  The risk still is very low; doubling a miniscule risk still leaves miniscule risk.  If you are nervous, the way to deal with it is to get tested.  Ventilating online is like masturbation:  feels good at the time but ultimately unsatisfying.

Feel free to email yourselves or to take your discussion to some other forum.  I will delete any further comments here.

HHH, MD  
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University of Washington
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