[Question #289] Concerned.

35 months ago
Several months back I had a cold sore and accidentally touched it and then touched my genitals. I am female. I know this sounds ridiculous, but i've tested positive for hsv 1 with a value greater than 7.0, but never thought my outbreaks were cold sores. I always thought they were pimples or impentigo, but now i realize these blisters were actually hsv 1 on my mouth. My gyno scared me to death and said that you could pass your own hsv infection from your mouth to your genitals. I do not recall having an outbreak after this incident, but then again I wasn't checking for genital herpes symptoms so i don't know if I  ever got any. 

What is the likelihood I passed my hsv oral infection to my genitals?
Can you pass your own hsv 1 oral infection to your genitals by touching a cold sore and then touching your genitals?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
35 months ago
I would respectfully disagree with your gyno.  Once you have an infection with one type of herpes in one location, it is extremely unlikely that you would get herpes in another location.  Please don't worry about this - it is not worth your time or trouble.  If your gyno was correct, small children with cold sores would often have genital infection, right, because they touch cold sores and touch their genitals all the time.  This should be not be a concern for you, Danielle
Terri

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35 months ago
Thank you so much Terri for putting my worries to rest! I truly appreciate your helpful knowledge and advice.

Have you ever seen a case where someone gave themselves genital herpes by touching a cold sore and then touching their genitals?

I've read your herpes handbook and articles, and seen you state that when you have a well established oral infection, autoinnoculation is close to impossible. Do you still stand by this? Can I take this scenario off of my worry list?

As I stated, my value was well over 7.0, which sounds established to me. What are the odds of me contracting hsv genitally, given the scenario I've described?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
35 months ago
No, I have never ever seen a person with a cold sore give themselves genital herpes.  I have seen people with brand new infection get herpes in both locations at the same time (they have intercourse with and give oral sex to a partner with herpes and get it in both locations) but that's different than what we are talking about here - completely different.
I am zero worries about autoinoculation with you, Danielle.  Yes, take it off your list!

Terri
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35 months ago
Thank you for the information Terri! So let me make sure I'm understanding everything correctly..

You've never seen a patient get genital herpes from touching their cold sore and then touching their genitals?

Also, you cannot get genital herpes from touching your cold sore and then touching your genitals correct? 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
35 months ago
I have never seen a patient get genital herpes from touching their own cold sore, correct, no in 33 years of specializing in herpes.  Is it possible to get genital herpes in this way?  I never ever say never but with this one, it's about as close as it gets.  If I was in your situation, let me say, I wouldn't ever give it another thought.

Terri
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