[Question #5242] Syphylis transmission from hand to genitals

22 months ago
I am a heterosexual male..About 10 weeks ago I visited an Asian massage parlor that ended with the masseuse giving me a handjob. Prior to that she played/fingered her genitals for a few minutes then proceeded to masterbate me with the same hand. Not sure if she had vaginal fluids or oil/lotion on her hand. I became very paranoid of aquiring an STD so I went and got tested 9 days after and again at 6 weeks after the incident. Both test came back negative to include a negative RPR. I am not concerned with hsv2 because I ve already been exposed to it over 10years ago. My questions are: 
1. Are those test results conclusive?
2. If that person had a syphylis lesion in or around genitals what are the chances of transmission via her hands to my genitals?
3. Should I retest or am I just over reacting?
4. Ive read that syphylis could take up to 3months to show up in blood test?
 also forgot to mention that there was no oral,vaginal/penetration or anal sex involved..
Thanx



Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
22 months ago
Welcome to our Forum.  As it happens, I was on the site when your question arrived so you are getting a response far more quickly that is usual.  The encounter that you describe was a no risk event.  STIs are not transmitted through masturbation, even when one person's genital secretions are on their hands as masturbation occurs- still no risk whatsoever.  Similarly, STIs are not transmitted on lotions and/or oils used during sexual activity, including masturbation.  had you asked me if you needed any testing at all, I would have said no.  

In answer to your specific questions:
1.  Yes, your results are conclusive.  
2.  No, no risk for syphilis from this encounter.
3.  There is no medical or scientific need for further testing.
4.  The "conventional wisdom" is that it may take up to 3 months for a syphilis lesion to appear or for a blood test to become positive but that is overly conservative.  Syphilis lesions appear, on average, about 21 days after exposure and virtually never more than 60 days after a contact.  

I hope this information is helpful.  You are in the clear. EWH
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22 months ago
Thanks for the fast reply! You answered my main concerns..so from what I am understanding is that if her hand touched/rubbed an active syphylis lesion and got its exudate on it the risks of transmission to my genital is nonexistent? 
Also is the RPR test reliable compared to the other ones?It seems to be the most utilized test one from what I ve read.





Edward W. Hook M.D.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
22 months ago
You are correct, like other STIs, syphilis is not transmitted through transfer of infected material on  a person' s hands to another person.  This was a no risk event.

Yes, the RPR is a widely used, highly reliable test for syphilis.  Believe your results.  You did not get syphilis from the encounter you described.  EWH
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