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Deep Kissing and Kaposi's Sarcoma
Mar 2, 2001

There was a recent report spread that HIV+ individuals can pass KS by deep kissing?. Is this true? Also is there a test to detect that you have KS or been exposed to it? If it similar to a Herpes virus isn't there going to be some latent virus/antibodies left in your system after suffering from it. I ask this because a partner wanted to know if I could pass it on to him even though it was over two years ago I had KS?

Response from Dr. Dezube

This is a REALLY difficult question. It is true that the New England Journal of Medicine (2000:343:1369) reported that deep kissing is associated with transmission of the herpes virus that causes Kaposi's sarcoma (KS). The researchers studied gay men withOUT KS. What they showed is that roughly one-third of gay men withOUT KS will test positive for the herpes virus (also known as KS-virus). The researchers then took these men with the virus and showed that half of these men will have the KS virus in their saliva (I hope I'm not confusing you with all these data). The bottom line is that your concern in real. HOWEVER, we need to put this in some type of perspective!! There are many viruses which are transmissible by the saliva. In some areas of Italy the rates of KS-virus are extremely high. Yet the vast majority of Italians in those areas do NOT have KS, though they will have evidence of infection by the virus. What I am trying to say is that even if you transmit the KS-virus, this does NOT mean that your partner will develop KS.

Unfortunately there's no readily available test.

i am a little upset with you!!
KS in my palate

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