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Mutual Masturbation during an outbreak: risk for Herpes?
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Mutual Masturbation during an outbreak: risk for Herpes?

Hello,

7 days ago, I was with my partner.  I am female and my partner is male.  He knows I have HSV2, and at the moment, I am not on suppressive therapy. There was a good possibility I was having an outbreak at the time.  

He fingered me, and touched my vagina, and then immediately touched his penis, and masturbated.  

My question:

1. What was the risk involved with this exposure? This was the only contact we had.  It was somewhat brief, too.

I've read sooooo many posts about mutual masturbation and risky behavior.  But for my situation, I believe I put my partner at risk.    

I would also like to mention that my partner, after 3 days of our "act," said that he felt a little run down and he had a canker sore in his mouth. He took a nap, and then he said he felt better.

Could this have been from stress (he has a stressful job as a firefighter), or could his body have been fighting off a new HSV infection?
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First,  has your partner been actually tested to see if he has HSV 2?  If not, I would recommend that he test.  Eighty percent of those who have HSV 2 don't know it.  Just a thought.

There are no good studies on transmission of HSV 2 via masturbation, so I am reluctant to give you any numbers - we don't have them.  However, by way of comparison, we know that if a female is infected with HSV 2 and her male partner is not and they have intercourse twice a week for a year, only four men out of 100 will become infected.  Now, compare that to the situation you describe where only very small amounts of virus might have been transferred to your partner via vaginal secretions, if any at all.

I do not feel that his feeling tired or getting a canker sore (not herpes) has anything to do with your sexual encounter.

So my next question is, why are you not on suppression?  You are clearly concerned about transmission and suppression reduces transmission by almost half.  Do you have concerns about the medication?

Terri
3 Comments
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Hi Terry,

Thank you for your response.  I've actually talked to my partner about suppressive therapy yesterday.  I'll be making my appointment with my doctor on Monday.

I was just worried that he could have had some virus on his hands and rubbed it into his penis.  The heat and the friction worried me that he possibly could've contracted herpes- especially when he said he was feeling run down 3 days after contact (but he doesn't feel that way anymore).

I do not have any concerns about the medication, but I do admit, dealing with the "stigma" can still be hard at times.

Thanks.
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I just don't think transmission in that way is likely or common at all.
Terri
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Terri Warren, RN, Adult Nurse Pr...Blank
Westover Heights Clinic
Portland, OR
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