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pablo

HSV I Transmission

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pablo

My wife of 20 years gets occasional cold sores(HSV I). I believe that I can get cold sores from her if I kiss her during active outbreaks, so I avoid kissing during these outbreaks. My brother, an MD, says that I WON'T get the virus if I contact the active cold sore because I probably already have immunity against the HSV I.

What is your take on this issue?

Thanks

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helied2me

If you already have immunity to HSV1 that means you have the antibodies which would mean you have HSV1. The only way to know would be to have a type specific antibody test to determine that.

If you test negative, then yes, you can contract it not only orally but genitally if she performs oral sex on you. Whether it's type 1 or type 2, it can be transferred to either location.

If you want to know for sure, have your brother order a blood test for the IgG Type Specific Antibody test for HSV1 and HSV2 and you will know your status for both.

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pablo

So, if I already have antibodies and therefore HSV I, is it possible that I am unaware that I ever had a primary attack of HSV I and have never had a secondary breakout in the form of a cold sore?

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helied2me

If you have HSV1 antibodies it is very possible that you are unaware of a primary outbreak and that you never had another one. You will only develop the antibodies if you have been exposed to the virus. Some people have outbreaks that are so mild they don't recognize they had an outbreak or they were too young to remember having one as a child because they didn't get outbreaks as an adult.

It has been said that some people just aren't susceptible to contracting the virus but it often happens that someone is married 20 plus years to a person with a history of cold sores before actually contracting it. We have a member that has had exactly that happen.

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NeedToKnow

I agree, your brother doesn't need to say "probably" because you can get tested and know for sure. Maybe he's basing that on the fact that you haven't appeared to get an inital outbreak in the last 20 years, so he figures you must already have it. If you get the blood test then you can know for sure and not have to wonder anymore.

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happy girl

Pablo...

Whatever you decide to do, I wouldn't risk contact with the virus under any assumptions. Once you have something that there is no cure for...well...it's just simply not worth the risk. Continue to practice your safe ways when your wife has an outbreak.

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