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How long to take anti-virals in a relationship?

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Hi all,

I'm H-. My boyfriend is H+. He got it a year back and had 2 full outbreaks and a few more with just prodrome symptoms. When we decided to have sex, I asked him to go on medication. He's not crazy about taking meds on a daily basis and has some annoying side effects. I completely understand that he doesn't want to be on Acyclovir long-term and really respect how in touch he is with his body, and we have great communication about when to periodically abstain. However, I'm still concerned about asymptomatic shedding, since I know that's how most transmissions occur. We always use condoms and will continue doing that, but since it's still early on in his H+ life, I also knows he's currently more infectious than he will be later on. I certainly won't ask him to be on meds 5-10 years down the line, but I guess I'm wondering when and why people in monogamous relationships have decided to stop taking suppressive medication. Do people recommend we continue for another 6 months to a year, or longer? He hasn't had any open sores since being on the meds.


Thanks so much for your help- this site has been a really great resource for us!

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Hello and Welcome!


This is a very personal question so I am only giving *my* POV because there isn't any other way to answer this.


First, one thing you may want to take into consideration is where he gets his OB's. If they are on his penis (where the condom covers it) then the condom will likely be a reasonable option. If the OB's are on the groin where the condom doesn't cover then it's likely not going to be that useful assuming that is the only area where he was exposed.


I for one tend to tell people that I would use the anti-virals until you are quite sure of your status as a COUPLE ... and given that he's more recently acquired the virus I would ask that he stay on them at least 6 months. By that time you should hopefully be secure in both your feelings for him and for his H status and how you feel about the risk ... minor tho it is ... and how that fits into your relationship.


Also, does he have HSV1 or 2? Your risk would be lower if it's HSV2 especially if you have ever had cold sores.... so it's useful to know ;)








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