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novagirl67

Something Thats Been Bugging Me...

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novagirl67

I know this has probably been repeated MILLIONS of times, but can someone please tell me HOW herpes are spread...i mean, can it be spread in other ways than being sexual? Because I've read by kissing..and if that's the case..then i could have possibly caught this by kissing a family member??? Sorry if I sound stupid, but I'm still trying to know the facts about this..

And another thing that bugs me, why is it that when people go in for blood tests to see if they have it, its possible to come out negative? Isn't that ridiculous?? If that's the case, my thought about this is "TO HELL WITH IT" everyone in the world is gonna catch something someday! :mad:

Sorry if i'm sounding...ridiculous..but seriously:rolleyes:

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curecomingverysoon

Okay, I think you need a little crash course.

By adulthood, 80-90% of Americans are infected with HSV-1. It is typically spread through kissing or near mouth contact open sores, although HSV-1 oral sheds on 18% of days. However increasingly (because people are having more oral sex than ever before), HSV-1 is showing up on people's genitals, and subsequently getting transferred from one set of genitals to another. Some people think that you can get it through sharing utensils/cups with someone with a cold sore but this is unproven/dubious.

Approximately 20% of Americans are infected with HSV-2. It is typically spread through genital contact (any region in the boxer shorts area has been proven to shed however). One is most infectious when one has lesions but HSV-2 sheds genitally up to 25% of the time (more in the first years of infection). Rarely, one can become infected orally, either by kissing someone who has it orally (very very rare) or through oral sex (rare).

A few cases are transmitted through open sores on hands making contract with infected sores, this is called herpes whitlow -- this can be HSV-1 or HSV-2. HSV-2 can occasion be transferred to one's eyes to cause kerastitis but the majority of kerastitis is caused by HSV-1.

An iGG serological blood test is highly accurate and will tell you whether you are positive for HSV-1 or HSV-2. A person can take up to three months to seroconvert from negative to positive though, so you need to go back and check to see if you're infected up until then. Biokits (for HSV-2) and Western Blots are considered ways to verify a diagnosis.

Almost everyone gets HSV-1. The way it's spreading, by 2025, 45% of Americans will be infected by HSV-2 because most people (up to 90%) have no idea that they are infected.

I think that covers it...

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Shayna

Hi Novagirl,

The links to the right of this forum page have a ton of information. Read them all and you will have a better understanding of everything hsv. ;)

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helied2me

I think people often get confused about the percentages of person's with Oral HSV1. It's actually about 50% by the time they reach the teen years and 80% above the age of 55 so we older folks seem to be at a disadvantage here.

Some people also question whether it can be transmitted through utensils cups, lip balms, etc. but even the Quest Diagnostics website says to avoid sharing these things to reduce the chances of infection. It is often a question on a new patient form when you go to the dentist so I am inclined to believe this is possible. I also read about research in killing the virus in dental equipment and it was still able to detect the virus even beyond 24 hours. What it did not say was whether it was still viable.

I think it would be wise to avoid sharing objects if there is even the smallest chance of spreading it, for more reasons than just HSV. Have you seen the new commercials about contracting meningitis?

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    • BioHacker
      Meds and condoms is really all you need. Statistically, HSV2 is so widespread because 80-90% of  people who have it are unaware that they have it, and so they don't take all recommended precautions (including using condoms). Oddly enough, if you were to replace your HSV2+ girlfriend (aware of HSV status, using condoms, using suppressive meds) with the average American woman (unaware of HSV status, but 25% risk, which is average - and using condoms at all times, since presumably you could insist on it), you would actually NOT reduce your risk of HSV2. The statistical risk would be approximately the same for both theoretical girlfriends (about 0.7% per year assuming sex 2x per week). That is a bit simplistic, because maybe you could decide to date only women who are verified virgins (essentially no risk), or maybe "below average risk" in some way (younger than average, fewer prior partners than average, etc.), or you could have all prospective girlfriends IgG blood tested for HSV as a condition to dating them (or having sex with them), which would reduce the risk significantly (especially if you confirmed the paperwork), but not completely (since antibodies take some time to develop). At some point, beyond-standard precautions become inconvenient and not worth the hassle (or risk of being perceived as paranoid). The risk isn't zero, and probably would never be zero, short of taking extreme measures. Efforts to reduce risk beyond standard practices, which already reduce risk to relatively low levels, are naturally subject to the law of diminishing returns. Accepting some level of risk is (unfortunately) part of the deal in most reasonable endeavors. Also, there is statistically a greater likelihood of two people passing HPV between them one way or the other, than HSV2 (assuming all recommended precautions are being taken). Of course, you could get the HPV vaccine (everyone should!). But the vaccine only covers 10-15% of the types of HPV that are out there. And tests for HPV are imperfect, and generally not available for males. And HPV (some types) can cause cancer (cervical, penile, and throat - maybe others). So, keep that in mind as well. And then, of course, there are all the other risks . . . Best not to be paranoid though . . .
    • WilsoInAus
      That’s correct. HIV is a distinct virus. No virus morphs into another one.
    • WilsoInAus
      Hey @thebrightsidegirl I hope you’re going ok, I’ve read your posts and will see if I can draw some threads. I see that you have genital HSV-1 and your partner has oral HSV-1. I’m not sure if he has tested but given it’s somcommon there’s no reason to disbelieve that’s what he has. This is the best concirdant scenario you can hope for in a sexual relationship. You both already have the virus and your immune systems are established and your experience with herpes is your own. You cannot induce an outbreak in each other by virtue your own HSV-1 and transmission to a new location on your partner is too small to worry about. If HSV-2 is present, then it needs to be brought to the relationship. It’s not at all likely you have it given you were infected genitally with HSV-1.  I suggest these symptoms are very unlikely to be related to herpes at all. If they are, then it’s far more likely to be a recurrent outbreak issue with your HSV-1 as opposed to an initial infection with HSV-2. 
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    • thebrightsidegirl
      Hey Wilson , do you kids answering this , i was kind of worried too ? 
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