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Spit from person with cold sores in eyes and risk of Herpes

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Hello I had a situation where I was at work and had to talk to someone for a few seconds and they had cold sores on their bottom lip, which where completely in scab stage. As this person spoke to me a tiny speck of spit hit the little red corner part of one of my eyes. Can you get herpes like this and what are the chances? Also because the cold sores where on the persons lip, wouldn't the saliva be seperate from the actual cold sores if say the person didnt have any lesions in their mouth? Also is working around people and getting a little bit of spit in your eyes from people talking with cold sores at all a risk?, because i think this also happened with someone i worked with a few times on the same day but cant be sure as i wasn't looking at them while they where talking but was close to them at the time. Please answer all questions thanks

Category: Infectious Disease Specialist

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Category: HIV- AIDS Specialist
 19 Doctors Online


Thank you for asking your query at DoctorSpring.

The chance for you to get cold sore from this kind of exposure is negligibly small.I would call it practical zero.

HSV1 typically spreads via a direct contact. Actually just direct contact is not enough for a transmission. Repeated direct contact exposure for upto 3 months is needed for transmissions.(as proven from studies among HSV positive and NON HSV individuals). If you are really unlucky you can get exposed to cold sore (HSV1) from saliva. But again you should understand that you get the same chance of contracting a lot infectious disease from anyone whom you are interacting with.

Add to that fact that almost 50# adults already have HSV1 virus exposure by teenage + 10-20 percent will never manifest HSV infection + 1/3 times HSV infection wont get transmitted by contact.

Putting all this together, it is unlikely that you are at any risk

Hope this helps
Feel free to ask followups
Thank you

Patient replied :

Ok are there any protective eye drops that you could use that make a protective barrier on the eye?


No there are no such protective eye drops. But it is not really required. You can use some sort of goggles if this is really a concern.

Thank you

Patient replied :

Hello this questions is off topic, but seeing as I had a question left and because u couldn't answer another question I posted not too long ago. I was wondering if u could tell me how long before and after do u have to wait to take codeine? Particularly a single dose of 120 mg that I've been on for migraines for a while. Let me know. Thanks


First of all Codeine is not an recommended medication for Migraine.
It might give pain relief, but there are better and safer alternatives like Triptans / Ergotamine etc. You should consider those.

Now the dose of Codeine. There is no single 'optimal dose'.

15-60 mg every 4 hours as needed; maximum total daily dose: 360 mg/day is the maximum recommended dose in day.
Since you are already on 120 mg the maximum suggested would be 120mg two tablets per day. But remember this will increase your opioid threshold.

Hope this helps
Feel free to ask followups
Thank you

Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy
Category: HIV- AIDS Specialist
MBBS from Sri Ramachandra University in December 2011
M.Med (Family Medicine) - TNMGR University, Chennai
MBA-MPH in Public Health in March 2016, SRM University
Finished AFIH in March 2016, SRM University
MRCP ( UK ), Internal Medicine, Royal College of Physicians, June 2016
Fellowship in Diabetology from Martin Luther University in January 2017

Currently Resident Physician, in MD Radiodiagnosis - Kamakshi Memorial Hospital, Chennai
Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy and 4 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you

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