Herpes threat no less for lesbians
Lesbians are just as likely as straight women to have herpes, a new study shows, but it’s probably not because of their same-sex activities: Most of those testing positive for the virus also report having had sex with men, Researchers at Harbor-view Medical Center in Seattle obtained medical and sexual histories from 392 women who reported having sex with another woman during the preceding year. Eight percent also reported having had sex with a man at some time–28% within the previous year.
“[Health care] providers should really assume nothing when a woman says I’m a lesbian,” said Jeanne M. Marrazzo, one of the researchers. Nearly half of the participants rested positive for HSV-1, the herpes virus that usually causes cold sores, and 7.9% for HSV-2, which tends to cause genital infections. Most were unaware they had the disease.
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