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Presentation of KS in women; How is it contracted?
Apr 4, 2002

It is true that when KS presents in women it is more likely to be lymph node or internal organ-related than on skin (i.e., not visible?) or is it that when it is visible on skin, women are more likely to have it internally also? Is contact with bisexual males necessary for women to contract this?

Response from Dr. Dezube

Your statement about KS in woman is partially true. KS is women can be just as visible on the skin as it is in men. However, it is true that KS is women tends to more likely involve lymph nodes and internal organs compared to KS in men. KS is caused by the Kaposi's sarcoma herpes virus (also known as HHV-8). Although women are more likely to acquire this virus from partners than from injection drug use, there are exceptions to the rule. Of note, the Kaposi's sarcoma herpes virus is spread more often by deep kissing than from vaginal sex. (This is in sharp contrast to the HIV virus which is spread more efficiently during vaginal sex than by deep kissing.) Hope these answers address your questions.


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