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Deep kissing & mouth ulcers
Dec 7, 2000

2 weeks ago I meet this terrific guy and we kissed for a few minutes. The following week we went to dinner & he told me he was HIV+ & that he has been for since he was 19, he is now 36. I'm a 37 yr old HIV- male. After he told me that, it didn't change the way I felt about him and I still want to get to know him much more. Again, that night we kissed deeply for a few minutes. This is my first real relationship and I have a real desire to be with this person. However, after the 2nd time we kissed I realized that I had mouth ulcers and I'm concern about this incident.

I didn't want to say something to him as I don't want him to think I paranoid now that I know he is HIV+ and everything we do I'll be questioning the risk. I realize that communication is very important in a relationship and probably even more so for a HIV+ & HIV- couple. I know there are recent responses to kissing, but I wanted to see if you could respond to this specific incident & give me some guidance as my specific risk & long term prevention. Thanks kindly,

Response from Dr. Remien

While nobody can tell you that it is IMPOSSIBLE to become infected this way, it is extremely unlikely. Kissing is not a recognized mode of transmission of HIV. Your anxiety and concerns are justified since this is all very new for you. And while ultimately communication between you and this man will be important - as the relationship progresses, it would probably be helpful for you to get some information for yourself, at this time. I suggest you spend some time reading the questions and answers on The Body's Safe Sex and HIV Prevention Forum. There are several questions there about risk of oral sex (including kissing) and other sexual risk behaviors. The following question is a fairly thorough discussion of a reported case of HIV transmission that may have been due to deep kissing, and you may want to read it thoroughly: Kissing

Take care, and get more information about all of this so you can comfortably enjoy yourself with your new friend.


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