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Herpes and Seminal Fluid
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The STD Forum is intended only for questions and support pertaining to sexually transmitted diseases other than HIV/AIDS, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, human papillomavirus, genital warts, trichomonas, other vaginal infections, nongonoccal urethritis (NGU), cervicitis, molluscum contagiosum, chancroid, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Herpes and Seminal Fluid

Is it possible to spread the herpes infection if seminal fluid (semen) gets into the eye?  

I am not certain that I have an STD.  I am not sexually active, other than I have had unprotected oral sex once over six years ago and protected oral sex recently.  I also had a severe yeast infections 2-3 times over a two year period 4-6 years ago. I have had swolen glands around my groin (and some swelling) off and on for a long period of time and it always went a way.  I have also had general rashes on my elbow and ankles.  I noticed that I have a small bump on the shaft of my penis.  I get these occasionally and they always go away within a couple days.  They do not pop or have white fluid.  They are just simply red bumps if they do appear.  I am finally in a more serious relationship and the only sexual activity that we have had is masturbation and rubbing.  I have been to the doctor in the past to describe the issue and my doctor tested me for HIV, Syphilus, Gonnoreah and Chlamidya, and Hep C.  All tests were negative.  There was no concern for HSV. The problem is that the symptoms keep recurring.  For a while my doctor thought that I had an inflammatory disease as I had sever conjuntivitis and costrochondrytis/pleuritis on multiple occasions.  I have also received the HBLA-7 gene testing that was also negative.  Does this sound like HSV1-2 and am I at risk for spreading this through masturbation and/or genital rubbing?  
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You ask the two questions as if they might be one in the same.  But they are not.  Could herpes be acquired by exposure of the eye to semen infected with HSV?  Certainly, yes.  I have never seen such a case nor ever heard of one, but it could happen.

Your second question is whether such a thing could cause the symptoms you have.  In other words, are the various symptoms you describe due to HSV?  To that the answer is a resounding no.  HSV simply does not cause such things.  If HSV were transmitted to the eye by semen (or any other secretion), the symptoms would be in the eye, nowhere else.  HSV does not spread through the body to distant sites.

It puzzles me why you might suspect herpes for the sorts of things you describe.  It's not a legitimate consideration.  But if you remain concerned about it, you could have a blood test dfor HSV-1 and HSV-2 antibody.  However, if positive for either one, it would only mean you have an asymptomatic HSV infection plus some other explanation for the symptoms that concern you.  So I really don't recommend testing.  But it is something you could discuss with your doctor.    

I hope this helps.  Best wishes--  HHH, MD
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
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