STDs Expert Forum
french kissing
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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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french kissing

i been french kissing a girl for about a year on and off that all we have done. she is hiv positive and i have read  on here that you can not get hiv from this. i have been tested for hiv and was neg. but what i am worried about can you get a std from french kissing her? it thems like ever time i kissed her  i throat start hurting couple days later and my side of the neck.wondering if she has gonorrea of the throat can i get that from her or anything else? could my throat hurting come from her or is it something else?
239123_tn?1267651214
Welcome to the forum.  Thanks for your question.

HIV has never been documented to occur by kissing.  Among other things, salvia inactivates the virus, so people with HIV don't infect people with their oral secretions; and people exposed orally rarely are infected. On the other hand, nobody can say the risk is zero, especially with repeated open mouth kissing.  Is your kissing partner on treatment for her HIV infection?  What is her viral load (the amount of HIV in her blood)?  If on treatment with a low viral load, any miniscule risk will be even further reduced.  In any case, to be maximally safe, I would recommend you have an HIV test from time to time, like once a year.

Other STDs also are not transmitted by kissing, with few and rare exceptions.  Oral gonorrhea is not transmitted at all by kissing.  Oral herpes due to HSV-1 could be transmitted, but that's not considered an STD if it doesn't involve the genital area.  Here is a recent discussion that explains the biological reasons why kissing carries little or no STD risk:

http://www.medhelp.org/posts/STDs/Short-lip-tot-lip-kiss--risk-of-syphilis/show/1861534

Of course French kissing is a very efficient way to transmit colds, influenza, and a number of other non-STD infections -- so your sore throat could indeed be caused by a virus you caught from your partner.  You can assume that any respiratory infection that either of you gets, the other will catch as well.

I hope this has helped.  Best wishes--  HHH, MD
12 Comments
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Avatar_m_tn
i have talked to her about her meds. she said she been off of them for 5 or more months. should i stop kissing her? thats all we do. if her viral loads are high can i get it through her saliva? so if she has gonorrea of the throat i still cant get it from french kissing?i thought it was always safe for just kissing her
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Avatar_m_tn
can you get hiv from her saliva if she have a high viral load or does have to be infrected by her blood
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Avatar_f_tn
u cant get hiv from saliva alone, even if it is infected with blood the chances are very slim! there has been only  1case of transmitting hiv through french kissing and they r not even sure about that!and trust me u r not going to be the second one! but i know how u feel i been in the same situation and  its been 1year and i still cant forget about it! i always feel that i have catched hiv or some sorts of std from french kissing a stranger! even though i know that it is very very rare to get these diseases from french kissing
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Avatar_m_tn
i have talked to her about her meds. she said she been off of them for 5 or more months. should i stop kissing her? thats all we do. if her viral loads are high can i get it through her saliva? so if she has gonorrea or chlamydia of the throat i still cant get it from french kissing?i thought it was always safe for just kissing her. worried about the std
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Avatar_m_tn
trying to find out if you can get gonorrea or chlamydia from kissing her if she has it in her throat

THANKS
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239123_tn?1267651214
As I said above, the transmission risk is very low, but I cannot say it is zero.  Personallly, I would not french kiss an HIV infected person not on treatment with a low viral load.

Even if she has oral gonorrhea or chlamydia, there is no known risk of transmission.  However, if she has other sex partners and might be at risk of STDs, I would suggest avoiding even kissing -- just to be super safe.
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Avatar_m_tn
Im little confused i notice that t took some stuff out of the answer u gave the time about viral load and other i could i ask why. why do u say u would not kiss her if she not on meds? Can u get it through salvia or blood
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239123_tn?1267651214
Read all my comments above and pay careful attention.  I said the risk of catching HIV by french kissing is very low but I cannot say it is zero.  I haven't changed my mind.

That will end this thread. I won't have anything more to say.
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Avatar_m_tn
im noy worried about hiv. im asking if she has gonorrea or chlamydia in her throat can i get from french kissing her? i  wont ask no more question

THANK YOY
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239123_tn?1267651214
Already answered! Read all my replies and pay attention. I haven't changed my mind and I'm not going to repeat myself.
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Avatar_m_tn
I didnt understand about the std question just want to know yes or no if u can get t if she has it in her throat? Yes or no please
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