The coronavirus is not transmitted sexually study finds
During the coronavirus lockdown, sex is safe.
The coronavirus can be transmitted from a simple cough — but it does not appear to transmit through semen, according to new research.
An international group of scientists in the US and China found no evidence of COVID-19 in the semen of 34 adult Chinese men who had, on average, tested positive for the deadly virus a month prior, according to the findings published Friday in the journal Fertility and Sterility.
The authors note that their findings were admittedly based on a small sample size, but were still significant because they showed the virus might not show up in testes.
“If a disease like COVID-19 were sexually transmittable that would have major implications for disease prevention and could have serious consequences for a man’s long-term reproductive health,” study co-author Dr. James M. Hotaling says in a press release.
The new findings also set COVID-19 apart from diseases including Ebola and Zika, which can be sexually transmitted.
Participants in the current research, however, only had mild to moderate cases of the novel coronavirus — it’s possible (but yet to be confirmed) that men who contract the disease more intensely can transmit it through sex, the researchers say.
“It could be that a man who is critically ill with COVID-19 might have a higher viral load, which could lead to a greater likelihood of infecting the semen. We just don’t have the answer to that right now,” says Hotaling. “But knowing that we didn’t find that kind of activity among the patients in this study who were recovering from mild to moderate forms of the disease is reassuring.”While sex as an isolated action likely can’t pass along the virus, other intimate acts including kissing certainly can. But all’s fair in love and the coronavirus, says government expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, who recently gave heartsick isolationists the green light to hook up with asymptomatic Tinder matches in real life — as long as they’re willing to take on some risk.