[Question #438] Cunnilingus & Associated Risks

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101 months ago
Hi,In early October 2015 I went to a strip club and had a dance from an erotic dancer (18y/o, female) which got a little out of hand.  She took my hand and ran it over her vagina a few times, for a few seconds each time.  At one stage she sat over me and took my hand for me to penetrate her vagina with one finger (literally the tip).  She then sat over my mouth and I gave her oral sex for a total of what must have been 10 / 15 seconds max.  This was mostly superficial (really these things aren't supposed to happen in such clubs and, that being the case, I don't suppose this girl could do such things for any prolonged period without getting into trouble).  I had no (known) cuts or abrasions on my fingers nor around my lips or in my mouth.  As far as I know my gums were healthy, with no bleeding.  I hadn't brushed my teeth in around 5 hours.  It's also important to tell you that I have absolutely no reason to believe this girl carried any STD, nor do I have reason to believe she was HIV positive.  This one incident was isolated and, as such, I started to wonder what I may have, or could have, 'picked up'.  This is when the Internet reading started.  I have worked myself into a very sorry state and need your input for peace of mind.  I have read your posts which are helpful, consistent and reassuring.  I also attended a sexual health (Sandyford) clinic and while no tests were taken, the Nurse advised that any tests would be purely for my own peace of mind.  I was advised to wait 12 weeks from the 'event' and I am due to be tested next week.  It appears that there is no overall consensus on whether you can 'catch' HIV (my main concern) or STD from such activities (excluding your consistent posts) however I am wise enough to understand that some authorities cannot commit to saying that such activities are 'zero' risk and instead argue that they are 'low' or 'lower' risk activities. Can you comment on this particular scenario?

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H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
101 months ago
Welcome to the forum. Thanks for your question. Thanks as well for reviewing other threads on this forum. You have correctly analyzed your own situation and I'm sure have correctly predicted my response.

I am not familiar with the Sandyford clinics, but after a quick look at their website, it seems the provide highly expert STD and other sexual health services, primarily for teens. I'm willing to bet the clinician(s) you saw have as much expertise as we moderators on this forum. In any case, I certainly agree with what they apparently told you. This was a no risk event in regard to any and all STDs. No STDs are ever transmitted by fingering or other hand-genital contact, regardless of cuts and nicks on the fingers (or so rare that any theoretical risk can be ignored). And cunnilingus also is extremely safe, expecially for the oral partner. There has never been a proved case (or to my knowledge, even a claimed case) of HIV transmission either by fingering or cunnilingus. And the chance of other STDs is almost as low.

For those reasons, I agree that any testing to be done is stricly for reassurance, not because of any significant risk. I would also point out, however, that for HIV you didn't really need to wait 3 months, assuming Sandyford offers the 4th generation ("duo", "combo") test for both HIV antibody and antigen, which is conclusive any time 4 weeks or more after exposure. (That said, some providers have a more conservative view of it. I don't know Sandyford's slant on it.) But if any other testing is done, such as HSV, 12 weeks is appropriate.

So all is well, no worries. You can expect negative results on any and all tests. In the chance something is positive, you and the Sandyford clinician will have to address other potential exposures that you haven't mentioned.

I hope this has been helpful. Best wishes and stay safe!