STDs Expert Forum
Oral Sex and STDs
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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 and STDs

I know this is low risk, but $22 seemed light for piece of mind

I was in Singapore 14 days ago.  I was with a sex worker (from Vietnam) for one night, but I was smart enough to not let things get out of least I thought so.

I went down on here for minutes with usual hand action.  That is ALL that happened.  There was no sex and she did not go down on me.  I stopped it all there.

I started a very sore throat 1-2 days later that persisted for 1 week.  I assumed it was nothing more than a sore throat due to many days of partying, no sleep and talking loud at loud bars.  My throat got better, but is still not completely better 14 days later and I do feel swollen lymph nodes.  I was OK with this....
Then, on about day 10 after the event, I started an eye infection.  I never get eye infections.  green mucus in the mornings and swelling in the corner of the eye.  I started polysporin drops immediately and 5 days later I still have the infection....arguably worse.  I would just let it pass and see what happens, but with young kids around the house, stakes are high.  One other piece of info is my son also had an eye infection that started the day before mine, but went away in 2 days with drops.   I was around him for only 2 days before he got the infection so I pray that there is no way he got it from me and it's an STD....

So questions:
-Low risk yes, but she was a sex worker in Singapore (Not US or Eastern Europe).  How worried should I be?
-If my body gets rid of the symptoms on its own, am I safe to assume no STD?  Same goes for my son?
-This is oral only.  I assume no risk of passing it on vaginally? (assuming no kissing, etc with the sex).  Making sure I protect my wife....yes I'm a low life.
-If my eye is an STD how contagious is it for my kids?

Welcome to the forum.  Thanks for your question.  I'm happy to confirm what you already know: this was an exceedingly low risk sexual encounter.

If I correctly understand, your only exposures were cunnilingus, i.e. you had oral contact with your partner's genital area, plus mutual masturbation.  For sure you can forget about the latter.  STDs are never transmitted by hand-genital contact.  Cunnilingus is also very low risk.  Some data suggest oral gonorrhea has been acquired that way, but very, very rarely.  There are theoretical risks for oral herpes due to HSV-2 and for syphilis, but in my 35 years in the STD business I have never seen either of these in this circumstance.

Your symptoms are typical for many common cold viruses; it isn't rare for conjunctivitis (eye infection) to accompany or follow a viral sore throat.  You may well have caught a cold from your partner, especially if kissing was involved -- but that doesn't make it an STD. However, since your son had a similar problem, it is most likely you caught your virus in the household.  As you undoubtedly know, the most common way adults get respiratory viruses and colds is from their kids.

To your specific questions:

1) You should not be at all worried.

2) Most infections, including most STDs, clear up on their own without treatment.  Whether your symptoms clear rapidly, slowly, or not at all has absolutely no relationship the your STD risk, which remains zero.  Same for your son.

3) Even if you had an oral STD, you are correct:  you could not pass it by genital intercourse.

4) No STDs, of the eye or any other body part, are spread to children except by sexual abuse.

If your or your son's eye symptoms don't clear up on their own in the next week or so, see a doctor.  But you needn't be at all worried about STDs.

Best wishes--  HHH, MD

Thanks.  you're right, the only contact was cunnilingus without even the mutual masturbation, although as you say that is irrelevant

My specific concern was two fold:
1) getting gonorrhoea or claymitia in the throat from the cunnilingus
2) Getting gonorrhoea or claymitia in the eye from touching her vagina and then touching my eye

Sounds like both are highly unlikely and I like your 30 year sample size...
As you say yourself, "both are highly unlikely". Chlamydia rarely causes oral infection at all.  Read my comments above.  I am convinced that none of your symptoms has anything at all to do with the sexual exposure you are concerned about.  You can't talk me into it!
Thanks for your help and keep up the great work on this forum.  It's an excellent source of information.
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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Edward W Hook, MDBlank
University of Alabama at Birmingham
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