[Question #1875] STD concerns

43 months ago
I am a married man for 18 years and I have only been sexual with my wife and her with me . Last night , I made a huge mistake and had protected vaginal sex with a stripper . I am a wreck today . What are my next steps . What are my concerns ? I am very worried for herpes and HPV 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago
 Welcome to our Form.. I will be glad to comment. It is my hope that my comments will help you calm down over the potential consequences of your misstep.  Your risk for any STI including herpes or HPV, like other STIs, is low.   I say this based on a number of facts which include: 
1.   Most commercial sex workers do not have STI's,  with the possible exception of HPV which virtually everyone has by their mid 20s. 
2.   Secondly even most unprotected sexual encounters with infected partners do not lead to infection. 
3.   Kind of protective and condoms remained the single best method for prevention of all STI's including HPV, herpes and HIV. 

 There is no medical indication for testing following the exposure you described. With respect to herpes if you were going to develop infection you will experience an outbreak of herpes lesions on exposed skin within a week to 10 days following exposure.   We specifically recommend against blood test for herpes virus in situations such as yours.  As for HPV, as I mentioned most people people have been infected with the virus by the time they were 25 years of age.  There are no approved tests for HPV in men. 

 My sincere and heartfelt advice is to do your best to relax following your misstep and to move forward without concern. I hope my comments will help you to do that. EWH 

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43 months ago
Thank you for the response . Are there any numbers for odds for herpes and HPV.  Will my wife have a abnormal papsmear if I was infected . I can't stop thinking about HPV , I'm 43 years old also 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago
Odds for HSV in your situation, certainly less than 1 in 1000, probably far lower.

With regard to HPV, you are missing the point (not surprisingly, the disease is often misunderstood with misperceptions fueled by internet-based inaccuracies)  Here's the logic chain:
1.  If you are over 25 you have already been infected with HPV, same for your wife.
2.  Odds of a new infection from this event you describe are very Low (not good data on how low)
3.  If you got HPV you might or might not transmit to your wife.
4.  If your wife was infected, she might or might not get an abnormal PAP smear.
5.  Even with an abnormal PP smear, it would be impossible to say if this was a recently acquired infection or re-activation of an infection acquired in her youth.

This is just not something to be worried about.  EWH. 
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43 months ago
I don't really understand  the. HPV concept.  Say I did have HPV  when I was in my twenties , can't I still catch the kinds that produce warts. Or different strands . How contagious is it ?   Can I resume sex with my wife and not worry . I want to make sure I'm doing it  right 
Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
43 months ago
Your questions are now going beyond your original question which was answered.  The topic of HPV is large and, as I said there is much misunderstanding about it.  I would suggest you go to a few trustworthy sites to learn more about the topic if you feel the need.  ASHA, who sponsor this Forum has a good web site alternatively you can read other posts on this site which deal with HPV to see how Dr. Handsfield and I have answered other clients' questions.  If you were sexually active in your 20s you likely were infected with multiple strains of HPV, whether or not you had wars.  So was your wife.  Most often these infections become quiescent over time and relatively cause genital warts or PAP smear abnormalities in women.  Even when they do, the infection tends to become quiescent over time. 

Repeating myself, my advice earlier was, and still is to not worry about the encounter you have described and to go forward with your like, including your sex life with your wife without concern. 

This is my 3rd response to your questions.  Thus, as per Forum Guidelines, this thread will be closed in a few hours.  I hope my advice has been heard and is helpful. Please do not mistake your guilt over your single, protected misstep with a need for, or risk for STI.  EWH

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