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Infections caused by HSV are contagious. The virus is spread from person to person by kissing, by close contact with herpetic lesions, or even from contact with apparently normal skin that is shedding the virus. Infected saliva is a common means of virus transmission. People are most contagious when they have active blister-like sores. Once the blisters have dried and crusted over (within a few days), the risk of contagion is significantly lessened. However, a person infected with HSV can pass it on to another person regardless of the presence or absence of symptoms and visible sores or blisters. This is because the virus is sometimes shed in saliva even when sores are not present. Despite popular myth, it is almost impossible to catch herpes (cold sores) from surfaces, towels, or washcloths.

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Archived: March 20, 2014

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Read the Original Article: Herpes Simplex Infections (Cold Sores, Non-Genital)