[Question #6860] Genital Herpes transmission risk probability

10 months ago
I am a 39 year old white straight male and have had HSV-2 since May 2018.  I actually know how I got it.  I have had about 4-5 outbreaks on the shaft of my penis since then and the last was in October 2019.  I have valtrex but never took it regularly.  I do have scars from an outbreak but nothing open or lesions currently.

However, since January 2020, I have been taking 1000mg of Valtrex daily and I have had no outbreaks even though I've been very emotional.  I have a girlfriend who knows what I have. Sometimes we use condoms and sometimes we don't. Most of the time we do.  She never had a visible outbreak. The last time we had sex without a condom I didn't take my Valtrex for 2 days.  I was only "inside" her for a short period of time and had no prodrome and no active lesions on my penis at that time.  What is the likely hood of her getting HSV-2 from me? and How long does Valtrex stay in your body?
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
10 months ago
It's very difficult to give you a specific answer but a single unprotected intercourse while on suppression (even though a couple of days were missed), is very very low risk.  It takes five days for Valtrex to be completely out of the system when dosing has stopped.  I would simply encourage you to be good about taking your meds.  You're doing all the right things - condom use often, you have disclosed your herpes to her, you are on suppression - all very good things.  I think you're good!  Just keep it up.

Terri
---
10 months ago
Thanks Terri. We have been together for a year and so far nothing has transferred and I'd like it to stay that way.  
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
Terri Warren, RN, Nurse Practitioner
10 months ago
I understand, of course.

Terri
---