[Question #5633] Skin or Open Sore

19 months ago

Do I need to have an open sore to catch herpes or can it just happen from skin to skin contact? If I (men) perform oral sex to my partner (woman) am I more prone to catch herpes with or without an open sore/cut?

Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
19 months ago
If your partner has genital herpes, you can contract this from her both when she does and when she does not have an outbreak.  She is not giving off virus every day, certainly, but the problem is that you cannot know when she is giving off virus (shedding).  If your partner has an outbreak, I would advise against sexual contact including oral sex and intercourse.  At least with an outbreak, you KNOW this is a day of viral shedding.  Daily antiviral medicine can reduce viral shedding and therefore reduce transmission risk.

Terri
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