One issue that seems fuzzy to a lot of us who have herpes is whether it can be transmitted to or by hands. It’s an important question, since the hand is one part of the body that never gets protected during safe sex. (Hand condoms? For some reason I just don’t think it would catch on.) Not to mention that someone with herpes will inevitably touch oneself on or near the infected area and should know the risks of autoinoculation.
In general, HSV-1 and -2 can be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact, but typically only where mucous membranes or cuts in the skin are present. For those who don’t know, a mucous membrane is a lubricating lining that covers a passage between inside the body and outside. The most well known mucous membranes are in the genitals and the mouth. By exposing a hand to the genitals of someone with genital herpes, or the mouth of someone with oral herpes, there is little chance of infecting the ha...
Diagnosis The herpes simplex virus is usually identifiable by its characteristic lesion: A thin-walled blister on an inflamed base of skin. However, other conditions can resemble herpes, and doctors cannot base a herpes diagnosis on visual inspection alone. In addition, many patients who carry the virus do not have visible genital or oral lesions. Laboratory tests are essential for confirming herpes diagnosis. These tests include: V irologic tests (viral culture of the lesion) S erologic tests (blood tests that detect antibodies) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that both virologic and serologic tests be used for diagnosing genital herpes. Patients diagnosed with genital herpes should also be tested for other sexually transmitted diseases. According to the CDC, up to 50% of first-episode cases of genital herpes are now caused by herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1). However, recurrences of genital herpes, and viral shedding without overt symptoms, are much less frequent with H...
Given the prevalence of herpes, and the constant turnover of
men in my life, I was always surprised I hadn’t met a potential mate who shared
my disease. Well I am thrilled to
say that it has finally happened, and I’m sure this has, or could, happen to many
others of you.
After a steamy night of making out and resisting the
temptation to indulge all of our desires, we spent the next day lounging in the
park, basking in the sun, and enjoying our new interest. Then, out of nowhere, he pushed back
and said, “So I think I should warn you…” and the wheels in my head started spinning…Uh
oh, lemme guess…you’re afraid of commitment? You’re an ex-convict? Drug addict? Until I saw
the look in his eyes, sensed his nervousness, and I knew he was about to
disclose an STD. “I have oral
herpes, so the more you kiss me, the more chances you have of catching
it.” What a r...
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