[Question #839] Testing and Exposure

87 months ago

I'm a male, and around five weeks ago, I had a sexual encounter with another male.  The contact was anonymous and with someone who likely has a higher chance of having HIV given his sexual history, but I asked the person whether he had HIV, and he said he did not.  The encounter consisted only of french kissing and mutual masturbation to completion.  I'm inclined to think this activity is low risk, but I did have a rather large canker sore on the inside of my upper lip during the encounter, and that plus the person's history has me a bit worried.  I did some research about this online and some websites suggested that an oral wound plus french kissing could lead to HIV transmission.  I might be in a relationship soon and don't want to risk transmitting anything to that person, so I wanted to check with someone concerning my risk, if any.  I took an OraQuick at home oral fluid test at four weeks and it was negative, but if I need further testing for HIV or anything else, I will do it.

Thanks for your help.
Edward W. Hook M.D.
87 months ago

Welcome to the Forum.  I'm glad to comment.  The exposure you describe is not an activity that put you at risk for HIV or any other STI.  That you have a canker sore makes NO difference, still no risk no matter what sort of mis-information you may get from the internet.  Any statements that French kissing has led to HIV acquisition are incorrect.  Based on the no risk nature of your exposure, I see no need for HIV testing.  If you do feel the need to test (as you apparently do), the OraQuick test is not completely accurate until about 8 weeks following exposure.  On the other hand, a 4th generation, combination HIV antigen/antibody test would provide accurate results at 4 weeks.

I hope these comments are helpful.  EWH