[Question #5657] Possible HSV-1 transmission to partner

21 months ago
I was diagnosed with genital HSV-1 about 4 years ago. I am currently experiencing an outbreak right near my vaginal opening, and while waiting for my prescription of Valtrex to be filled I have dabbed Manuka honey on the sores-which I read can be really useful for the inflammation and healing process-and covered it with a bandaid. I was with my boyfriend last night and one thing led to another and we had protected sex. I am wondering how high the possibility of transmitting it to him is. The sores were covered with the bandaid and he used a condom but I am extremely nervous. He is aware that I am diagnosed but he did not know I am currently experiencing an outbreak and I am scared that I have potentially given it to him. Do you think the possibility is extremely high since they were covered and we used a condom? Is it possible that even being covered and not making contact with them that he got it from my bodily fluids? I am so so scared I passed it to him 
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
21 months ago
I don't think the risk is extremely high but there is some low risk. I think the condom and bandaid will be useful in limiting the risk of transmission. Best to avoid sex when having outbreaks as that is the one time that you know for sure that you are shedding virus.  Has he ever been tested to know that he is not infected himself?  has he ever had a cold sore on his lip?  On another note, it is far better to have your prescription of Valtrex ready at home when you have an outbreak, rather than waiting to have it filled when you get symptoms.  Ask that your prescription be refillable for events such as this one. 

Terri
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