[Question #5716] Please provide risk factors for all major STIs

22 months ago
I have been scouring all the questions and could probably price together my answer but nothing is 100% specific to my incident.  While out of town I visited a strip club and got a private dance. The stripper allowed me to vigorously rub her vagina and insert my finger into her vagina and anus.  I observed no cuts on my fingers. She rubbed my penis though my pants (my penis was never exposed). We also had several instances of deep (French) kissing. Now I’ve read that all of this is low to no risk but every once and a while sometimes I read a slight contradiction.  I’m especially concerned about throat  ganorea  (spelling?) HSV and Syphillis because that is where the occasional doubt creeps in on some of the answer posts. I am 40+ heterosexual and up until this incident monogamous with my long term spouse. I don’t want to jeopardize her health. It’s been 3 weeks and recently I have had a sore throat. I also historically  have geographic tongue from time to time not related to any health issues but of course I google a picture of syphillis and tongue and they look the same. I’m currently experiencing “geographic tongue” (which is at times stress induced) and the similarities scare me. This all took place in southeastern US state. I got the impression that the stripper would be open to more and might use the gig to find johns so she might also be CSW. I’m a wreak. I appreciate the candor of your responses and eagerly await hopeful news that I nor my wife are at risk. 
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
22 months ago
Welcome to the forum. Thanks for your confidence in our services and for reading other threads before asking your question.

I agree there's a good chance any particular female stripper is also a CSW. But that doesn't change anything. Most such women have no transmissible STD at any particular point in time. But more important, STDs are not transmitted by kissing, hand-genital contact, or fingering; and for sure cannot be transmitted through clothing. So this was a zero risk event in regard to all STDs. 

Your symptoms do not concern me. Oral gonorrhea almost always causes no sore throat or other symptoms, and no STD is a likely cause of geographic tongue.

I do not recommend tesitng for anything, and would advise you to continue your normal sexual practices with your wife. But if you are nervous and would like to be tested for reassurance, feel free to visit an STD clinic or other provider for a throat swab for gonorrhea (valid any time more than a few days after exposure); and perhaps blood tests for HIV and syphilis (valid any time 6 weeks or more after exposure). However, the chance you caught any STD is nearly zero, and I would would advise you to continue your normal sexual practices with your wife. That's what I would do IiI were in your situation, and I wouldn't be tested for anything.

I hope these comments are helpful. Let me know if anything isn't clear.

HHH, MD
---
22 months ago
Thank you for your response. This is such a great service and forum to have access  to expert advice from you, Dr Hook and your colleagues.  It provided me such piece of mind. 

Would you be willing to provide a brief explanation as to why kissing is zero risk activity. Is it an inhospitable environment?  Are there no viruses in saliva? Etc?

Thank you again. I conclude my inquiries after this. 
22 months ago
For the record, I’m not doubting your advice. I just like knowing the science behind it. As stated in previous threats, if kissing was a way to transfer std it would be a much larger epidemic. I believe you were quoted as saying “you have to have sex to get an STD”. Thank you again for your time. 
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
H. Hunter Handsfield, MD
22 months ago
Of course no problem to ask such questions -- happy to reply (except sometimes when the question asks for very detailed reviews of complex issues -- which doesn't apply here).

The reasons oral exposure to HIV is low risk are not completely understood, but indeed the oral cavity is an inhospitable environment for HIV. Saliva inhibits the virus. You are exactly right that if kissing could easily transmit HIV, it would be a far larger epidemic. The same applies in general terms to all STDs -- zero or very low risk from kissing. There's a current scientific debate about gonorrhea being transmitted by kissing, but most experts believe it isn't common.
---