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Hepatitis and HIV CoinfectionHepatitis and HIV Coinfection
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am I at risk
Sep 6, 2000

Dr. Dieterich, My partner is hcv infected, am I at risk by kissing, especially after brushing our teeth? He is asymptomatic. If his hcv viral load is low is the risk to me lower? Is oral sex risky regarding "pre-cum"? Can he have been exposed but not be a carrier? Thank you for your time. Steve

Response from Dr. Dieterich

Dear Steve,

Kissing has not been demonstrated to be a risk yet for HCV transmission. Symptoms have no bearing on the risk of transmission or the prognosis for that matter. Some people (10%) or so will have antibody to HCV and have no detectable virus, they are not infected. No one has studied "pre-cum" with HCV, however it does appear that some men have HCV in the semen and if they have HIV it is more likely that they HCV in the semen, and thus risk for sexual transmission. Be careful! DTD

Pot Belly
hcv hiv+

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