[Question #1088] Recent genital HSV1 diagnosis

73 months ago
Hello,

I was recently diagnosed with genital HSV1 after receiving oral sex from a new partner who was not showing symptoms at the time. I now understand that this type of transmission is common and can occur during asymptomatic shedding. I have done some research online and have met with my doctors to better understand what I now have and how I can move forward safely. I am continuing to see the same person and would like to progress in the relationship but have been hesitant to do so without a clearer understanding of the risks involved.

My question is, if my partner and I have unprotected sex is there a significant risk of me passing  my genital HSV1 back to him genitally? (He has oral HSV1 and is the same person I mentioned above.) Can he still perform oral sex on me? 

In discussing these questions with my OB/GYN, he said we should be fine having unprotected sex as my partner has the antibodies due to his existing HSV1. I would like to be able present all of this information to my partner so that we can weigh the risks and make an informed decision together. But before I can do that I feel I need a second opinion because I'm a little skeptical of my doctor's insistence that we should be fine whilst having unprotected sex that is not during an outbreak. Just to be clear I do understand that I can pass this through unprotected sex with a new partner but I am specifically asking about this situation since he is the one who transmitted it to me in the first place. It's all a bit confusing! 

Thank you for your time and expertise!

Additional info if necessary - I did not have HSV1 up until this point, no history of cold sores etc. He has tested positive for HSV1 (obviously) and his last known/realized outbreak was 15 years ago.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
73 months ago
I would certainly agree with your doctor.  Once you have HSV 1 in one location on your body, it is extremely unlikely he would get it in a new place on his body.  If you were my patient, I would say go ahead and have a great relationship and put this worry behind you.  In my experience at my clinic, most HSV 1 is transmitted in the absence of cold sores so don't be too upset with him, if you are upset.  Your future with HSV 1 infection is likely to be mild and infrequently recurring in the genital area. 

Terri
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73 months ago
Thank you Terri, I really appreciate your advice! I am not upset at all and am in good spirits. It has been something I never thought I would go through but overall it has been more positive than anything! Thanks again.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
73 months ago
You are most welcome

Terri
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