STDs Expert Forum
Oral Sex, Sore Throat, STD?!?!
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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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Oral Sex, Sore Throat, STD?!?!

27/F-limited sex partners, protected. 2 months ago started dating a new guy. NO vaginal sex, just him fingering me/me performing UNPROTECTED oral on him. He has HSV-1. Asked if he is clean otherwise, he replied that he has been tested, & doesn't knowingly have anything. After the 1st time I performed oral I got a sore throat a day later. The oral sex lasted 4 quite awhile, & he has a large penis. He ejaculated into my mouth. The sore throat wasn't severe just uncomfortable w/difficulty swallowing. I went 2 a clinic a week later & got tested. All came back negative! A nurse informed me that sometimes just performing oral can cause your throat 2B irritated. Since then I have performed oral on him twice. Time 2: nothing happened. But a week ago I did it again, &this time I got a worse one. I get anxious & it feels like my throat is closing up. I try swallowing & I feel like I'm irritating it more. Then I started 2feel like I had a cold. I started taking extra V-C, echinacea, tea & gargling w/salt water. My sore throat has lasted (some days worse than others) 4 a bit over a week. I also had pain on the outside of my right ear. Then yesterday I went 2 brush my teeth & my upper right wisdom tooth area hurt a lot. I put peroxide on it 2 clean it out. Today my tooth doesn't hurt as bad & my sore throat is much less, but still present. Was it too soon 2B tested for STDs? Could an STD cause a sore throat/tooth infection? Can anxiety cause a sore throat? I don't have a lot of $ so I don't want 2 go see a doctor & have tests done if I'm just being paranoid. Help me! Thanks.
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239123_tn?1267651214
Several people responded before me (below) with pretty accurate information.  The nurse was exactly right.  Tesearch shows that among people attending STD clinics, many who have performed fellatio in recent days complain of sore throats.  However, the frequency of STD of the mouth or throat (e.g., gonorrhea, herpes) is no higher in those with sore throats than in people without them.  This means that 1) fellatio itself is associated with sore throat, presumably from irritation, just as your nurse said; 2) STDs are a rare cause of sore throat; and 3) most STDs of the throat cause no symptoms.

Since your partner is obviously at low risk for STD, you can be pretty sure your symptoms are due to some combination of nonspecific irritation, a garden-variety respiratory virus, and/or anxiety.  As other said, anxiety definitely could be the main problem.  And as I have said many times on this forum, when a person suspects his/her own symptoms have an emotional origin, probably s/he is almost alway correct.

If you remain concerned, visit your local health department STD clinic.  You will get expert care at little cost, perhaps free.

Good luck--  HHH, MD
7 Comments
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79258_tn?1190634010
I'm not the doctor, but I think you have your answer right here: "I get anxious & it feels like my throat is closing up." Yep, anxiety will do that to you. My guess would be that you're anxious about the experience, and so you're paying way, way too much attention to what are probably just normal sensations. You know, you notice a little tickle, start worrying about what that might mean, start to panic, start noticing/creating all kinds of other symptoms... Just a thought.
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Avatar_n_tn
I really do hope that this is the case.  The first time around, I really think that that was the answer.  But this last time, I got a more severe sore throat.  I still have it actually.  But some days it gets worse than others.  A few months ago I found out I had HPV, and before researching it, I got really stressed out and freaked out about it.  So freaked out, I made myself sick.  And then every time I even kissed a guy I panicked.  I know, its ridiculous.  As a matter of fact, I feel silly admitting it.  Especially now that I know that HPV is such a common thing.  But I couldn't help but think: "I'm 27 and only been with 4 people, why me?"  And then I thought, if that could happen with only 4 people, then what else can happen?  And I didn't realize how much you can actually catch by Oral sex.  I did research and started freaking out more.  This last time I had oral sex, I had a canker sore, which would give me more exposure to STDs.  It just sucks, because before this I had a very mature, responsible and FUN sex life.  When I found the right guy, I really enjoyed it.  Since this hads happened I haven't enjoyed myself at all.  I don't know how to get over it psychologically.  And now with this sore throat, and tooth ache I'm freaking out again.
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Avatar_n_tn
If you don't know how to get over it, the next step might be professional help.

Based simply on other similar questions I've read here, it doesn't sound like it is STD related, but a medical professional is really the only one who can help you with that, including on this format. Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
I know that if I don't get over it soon, I need to do something.  Axiety is way worse for you than anything else.

Right now, I just came back from lunch, and I looked at my throat, and its pretty red, and I'm having trouble swallowing.  Its not swollen though.

WHEN DOES THE DOCTOR USUALLY POST?
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79258_tn?1190634010
Generally every day, although at different times. He's in WA, but I think he travels a lot.

But seriously, you really should google anxiety symptoms. Difficulty swallowing is one of them...

Also, isn't it possible that you just have a sore throat? Or maybe even strep throat? Why automatically conclude it's a STD? So, if you don't have insurance, you can go to your health department, or depending on your income/living situation, you may qualify for your local free clinic. And while you're there, make sure you mention the intensity of your anxiety about this situation. Medication can really help :-)
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Avatar_n_tn
The first time I went to get tested for all the main STD's (HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis and HIV was actually at a free clinic.  It was after the first time I gave him oral sex, and got a sore throat.  But it was only 4 days later, and I'm not sure if STD's would have shown up in my system that quickly or not. It was shortly after I found out about HPV too, so I was paranoid and wanted to get tested for everything.  All came back negative.

I'm kind of embarassed going back to the same free clinich (which is only open on Wednesdays).  Especially because I have been with only the same guy since my last visit.  But is it possible I contracted an STD from the same guy the second time around?

The reason I think it could be an STD is because of how red my throat is.  Its been a week and a half and my throat is still pretty red.  If it was just irritation from giving oral sex, wouldn't it have gone away by now?
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Avatar_f_tn
Stop having unprotected sex if you are. Men CAN get hpv!!! It dooesnt effect
them but they become a carrier, and will transmit it to other women!!!!! And he can get complications in his mouth and jaw if he contracts hpv from u. Its rare but possible. Always use a condom in oral sex or intercoirse, because u can give it to him and their is NO way for him to b tested, and he can pass it on unknowingly!!!
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