[Question #3967] Did I get HSV1 by kissing?

33 months ago

Hello, I recently kissed a girl of unknown HSV status for 3-4 minutes. She had no visible sores. And there wasn’t any tongue involved. The problem is, I did have some dental work done 2-3 days before that and I guess my lips were a bit dry as well. Maybe this increases the chances of HSV1 getting through?

Anyway, approximately 36 hours after that kiss, I started getting a weird tingling, dry sensation on the left corner of my lip. The feeling wasn’t always there. I mostly just felt it when I tried smiling.

I immediately went and applied an aciclovir cold sore cream on it just in case I got infected with HSV1. The feeling didn’t go away, it was still there. I felt like the cream was doing nothing.

So approximately 12 hours after this feeling started, I went to the doctor and explained everything. He gave me valtrex, and told me to take 2 doses within 12 hours of each other to prevent a cold sore from occurring. I did that and the feeling was pretty much gone within a few hours of me taking the meds. Everything’s been fine since then and it’s been 3-4 days now.

I guess my question is…What are the chances I actually got HSV1 from this encounter I had? If I want to get tested for HSV1, how soon can I do it? Now? Or after a few weeks?

Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
33 months ago
I understand that you are thinking that they taking of two doses of Valtrex may have stopped a cold sore from coming, right?  I seriously doubt that two doses of antiviral medicine would stop a brand new herpes infection from manifesting itself in the form of a cold sore.  I think sometimes people forget that when they kiss someone they get potentially exposed to some one else's germs, not only HSV but others organism as well.  This could certainly have been the case with you as well.  But I really don't think you acquired new HSV 1 at this encounter and that two doses of antiviral medicine would stop HSV 1 from becoming latent in your body. 
You can certainly test for HSV 1  - unfortunately,  the test misses 30% of HSV 1 infections.  If you test now, I don't know how long ago this incident happened, but if your antibody test for HSV 1 is positive, you may have had it for years.  what is the timing like here?

Terri
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33 months ago
Thanks for the reply Terri. Since I already asked you this question at westoverheights, I was hoping to get a second opinion here with one of the other doctors. Is that still possible or should I open a new question?

Regarding the timing, it’s been a week since I had this exposure. So I assume that I can test it after 11 weeks? Is it worth getting tested any sooner? How accurate will the test be if I get it tested after a month instead of waiting 3 months? Waiting is probably the worst part since I feel like I have to put my dating life on hold to confirm my status first. Thanks for the help!
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
32 months ago
Sorry, I answer the herpes questions here as well as westoverheights and making a new post will not change that.  I can tell you with 100% certainty that Drs, Handsfield and Hook would agree with my response.

We have information about seroconversion times for HSV 2 - we lack this specific information for HSV 1 but I think it would be similar.
By 3 weeks from expsoure/infection, 50% of people will be positive, by 6 weeks 70%.  So if you wanted to test earlier, I don't see a downside and it might provide you with some reassurance.  Again, I think your risk here is very very low indeed.

Terri
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