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Worried
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Worried

Hi,

I was hoping to gain some perspective on a scary situation for myself. I have since childhood suffered with the odd cold sore. This morning my boyfriend and I had oral and regular sex, after I noticed that I had a red spot on my lip. It doesn't  feel like a typical cold sore however I am  now worried that I have exposed my boyfriend and myself to genital herpes.  What are the chances that HSV1 could develop into HSV2 in this situation?
4 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_m_tn
Since you've had cold sores since childhood, which is HSV-1, you are immune or at the very least highly resistant to acquiring genital HSV-1. If you think about it, many babies get oral HSV-1, and babies are prone to touching their whole bodies, so if HSV-1 could be transmitted easily, then we'd see plenty of babies walking around with genital HSV-1. Thankfully, we do not see this.

Your oral HSV-1 could be transmitted to your partner through oral sex if your partner doesn't have oral HSV-1 himself, but you two will not ping pong a shared HSV-1 infection to other parts of your body such as the genitals even if you did give him genital HSV-1.

There is no way that you can give him HSV-2 since you don't have HSV-2, and the only thing he's at risk for is HSV-1 if he doesn't already have it orally. If he does have oral or genital HSV-1, it's pretty much a non issue going forward in regards to precautions since as stated above, you won't ping pong HSV-1 back to each other in different locations.

If this is in fact a cold sore that's in the beginning stages, it's definetely possible for him to contract it genitally if he doesn't have an established infection orally. Oral HSV-1 can shed and be contagious up to 18% of days per year, so if he doesn't have oral HSV-1, and didn't contract it genitally from this exposure then you should notify him of the risks involved. HSV-1 is a common virus that most adults carry, so it's likely he already has this. Has your partner ever been tested for HSV-1? If not, he should be tested, and if he comes up positive then it's really a non issue.
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101028_tn?1419606604
also have you ever been tested for herpes to know your own status?

grace
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Avatar_m_tn
I was just under the impression that HSV-1 can mutate into HSV-2 if exposed to the genital area. To my knowledge I've never been tested for any HSV types I've just had about 4 cold sores across my 24yrs. My boyfriend is my first sexual partner and I'm his second. He has had a cold sore or two as a kid but none in adulthood
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Avatar_m_tn
As Grace pointed out, you both really should be tested. Herpes is a common virus regardless of type. You both have oral HSV-1. Depending on age, HSV-1 infects between 50-90% of adults while HSV-2 infects 1 in 5 depending on age as well. Even if your boyfriend has only had one partner in the past, both of you should get tested; it's much better to know than to worry.

It appears that both of you have HSV-1, and most adults carry it. It's common for people to get a couple of cold sores (HSV-1) as kids then never get them again, so since it appears you both have HSV-1, it's not an issue in your relationship sexually (oral or genital sex). There is no way HSV-1 can develop into HSV-2; they're two completely different strains.
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