[Question #3708] Genital HSV 1 Genital Transmission

35 months ago
A friend was diagnosed with HSV 1 genitally over 5 years ago. She had 2 recurrent outbreaks within the first 7 months and despite having a high stress job and being in stressful situations since, has not had other outbreak.
She is concerned about transmitted genital HSV 1 to a partner in the absence of symptoms. How likely is this to happen?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
35 months ago
It is unlikely to happen.  HSV 1 genital infection is pretty inactive in most people who have it.  I have yet to see a case of HSV 1 being transmitted via intercourse but it has definitely been documented to happen.  The best strategy to reduce the risk of transmission is to take daily antiviral therapy and have her partners use condoms.  If she is having sex with someone who has ever in their life had a cold sore, the risk of transmission then is almost zero

terri
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