[Question #2735] Protected oral sex - chance of getting Herpes or other STD

41 months ago
Dear Doctor, I'll try to be clear and brief. I'm male, 35 years old.  Seven days ago I had a sexual encounter with a sex worker in Brussels red light district - stupid decision. It was a blowjob (protected, with condom, she put it on my penis with hands) around 1-2 minutes long. I did not have erection, so she stopped and I left. No vaginal or anal sex.  As far as I remember she did not touch uncovered parts, but I'm not 100% sure.

Five days later I started to feel burning in my groin (both sides) and it became a bit red - the area between my legs and groin. I put a soothing creme on it and it went away, both burning and redness.

Yesterday afternoon I started to feel numbness in my left leg, it is still present, however, it became better, it is mild, but still present. I have no other symptoms (blisters, sores, redness, fever, headache, etc).

Do you think, this can be Herpes or any other STD? HSV1 or HSV2? I went to an STD clinic for full tests, waiting for results now. The problem is here the labs do not distinguish between HSV1 and HSV2. However, I know I'm positive for HSV1, sometimes I have cold sores on my mouth and I was already positively tested for it twice - once last year, once couple of years ago. I've heard in case I have HSV1 in my blood, I cannot be infected with it again, is that true?
Besides, I have to admit I'm really anxious and stressed, too. I've also heard this can cause some symptoms. Thank you for your opinion.


Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
I"m sorry you are feeling so stressed, I'd like to reassure you your experience presents no real risk at all for having acquired an STI at this experience.  Whatever symptoms are you are experiencing now are due to some other cause but not herpes.  And often when people have a sexual experience they question, symptoms that previously would have meant nothing take on new meaning.  And if you test and it is positive, it is useless because of your past HSV 1 infection, so I would suggest that you don't test. 

Terri
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41 months ago
Thank you for your answer, it gave me some relief. Yesterday I received the results of the STD tests, all came back negative. There was not blood test this time for Herpes, but they've made a swab test both for HSV1 and HSV2 - negative, as the other tests. Today is the 8th day, I hope everything will be fine. Could you tell me what is the incubation period for Herpes, after how many days does it appear? There are really different information on the internet beginning at 24-48 hours till months....really difficult to find exact information. Thank you.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
It is confusing, yes.  The average time from infection to first outbreak is 2-10 days, with the average being 5.5 days.  However, not everyone gets symptoms with a first infection and the first symptoms could show up months later.  That's perhaps what you are reading about?  Antibody tests can be considered as accurate as they are going to get (which isn't great particularly for HSV 1) within 12 weeks from the encounter.  Does that help?

Terri
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41 months ago
Yes, thank you. I'm on day 12 now. Taking this into account and your answer to my original question, I strongly believe I'm fine. I really appreciate your answer and this service you created.
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
41 months ago
You are most welcome.

Terri
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