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How Long Does a Herpes Virus Live Outside the Body?

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How Long a Herpes Virus Lives Outside the Body The herpes virus dies quickly once it reaches the air. Once the virus is shed from the body, it can only survive for around 10 seconds. It can survive for a few seconds longer in warm damp conditions, like on a wet towel. How It Can Be Caught The fact that the herpes virus cannot survive for more than a few seconds outside of the body is not the only factor that makes catching herpes without skin-to-skin contact quite difficult. To contract herpes from a surface like a toilet seat, you not only must come into contact with the herpes virus within a narrow 10-second window, but it must come into contact with compromised or broken skin. Contagious It may seem like it is difficult to contract the herpes virus since it can only survive for 10 seconds outside the body and must come into contact with compromised or broken skin to be transmitted. Those who are infected with herpes, however, constantly shed a large viral load when they are ... more
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