[Question #1039] Statistics on Herpes Transmission

57 months ago
What are the statistics I can give a potential partner of his risk for contracting Herpes from me?  I am a female that contracted herpes many years ago via  oral to genital transmission from a male who thought he had recovered from a recent oral cold sore.  We remained in a monogamous relationship for many years and he never developed genital lesions despite having unprotected sex with me ( i.e. no condoms) and my Not using Valtrex.  I am interested in a new male partner and want to tell him what the chances are of his contracting genital herpes from me with and without the use of condoms.  I have recently started on Valtrex 500mg per day.  Thank you for your help.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
57 months ago
I surely do wish I had that statistic but I don't.  But we can take a guess if you like.  We know that HSV 2 sheds on about 15% of days - HSV 1 on about 5% of days (at least from the most recent statistics that I have).  And we know that if you had HSV 2 and you used valtrex daily, the risk you would infect someone if you had sex twice per week would be about 2% - condom reduce that more.  So now if we apply the percentage of days you shed virus with HSV 1 and apply these statistics to the same sexual situation (ie sex twice per week) your risk would be less than 1% of infecting him.  I'm afraid that's the best I can do for guesstimating the transmission risk.  Hope that is helpful.

Terri
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57 months ago
Thank you Terri.. The information is very helpful. Just to clarify, can you tell me if the stats are based upon my taking Valtrex and therefore the rate of transmission would be higher if I were not on Valtrex?
Also, is the dose of 500 mg per day adequate when not having an outbreak?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
57 months ago
The rate of transmission would be higher if you were NOT taking Valtrex, correct.  and yes, 500 per day is adequate when not having an outbreak.  You are well informed!

Terri
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