[Question #2293] Herpes risk to children in home

44 months ago
I have been dating someone with HSV2 and before we have sex I want to know whether or not my choice will put anyone else in the household at risk.  Is there any chance of transmission to children (not thru birthing) that I should consider.  He is very hesitant to put me at risk, but I love him and am willing as long as I am not putting my children or others in the household at risk.  Also how high is the risk of transmission to me if I perform oral sex on him (not during an outbreak)
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
44 months ago
There will be absolutely no risk to your children if you acquire HSV 2 from your partner. 
In order to help determine the degree of risk to you, I need to ask first - is he on daily herpes medicine? 

Terri
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44 months ago
No - he has only had one outbreak and does not feel the medication is necessary.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
44 months ago
The medicine isn't just for outbreaks - it also reduces transmission by almost half and it has very few if any side effects for most people.  I think it is an easy, safe and effective way to assist in transmission reduction.  Let's say he does agree to take medication. In a situation where the male is infected with HSV 2 and the female is not, having sex about twice per week,  condoms used, yes to meds, no sex during outbreaks, the transmission rate is about 2-3% - that is, in a year of this situation, 2-3 women out of 100 will become infected genitally.  I am assuming you will be using condoms.  Virus can be transmitted when no symptoms are present.  We don't have statistics about transmission via oral sex but I would think it might be slightly lower as the virus does not like the mouth much and if acquired there, recurs infrequently and sheds infrequently

Terri
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