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MRSA Sexually Transmitted – Kissing, saliva and skin transfer?

Can MRSA be caught via kissing and saliva? What about mrsa on the penis or vagina? Skin contact enables transfer of MRSA sexually. Find the key facts here.

Sex is one of many means by which MRSA spreads. Here are some reasons and some action you can take with respect to MRSA sexually transmitted infections.

Skin Contact and MRSA Penis Infections

MRSA often lives on our skin without causing harm. Skin contact is therefore going to enable transfer of MRSA bacteria during sex. It is often found in the nose, armpit and groin areas. MRSA is a drug resistant version of the common staphylococcus aureus bacteria.

Is MRSA sexually transmitted by kissing?

Kissing will deepen the risk of transfer to your nasal passages if your partner is colonized there. Its the closeness of your noses that is key with respect to kissing and not so much the lip contact or saliva. MRSA may remain dormant in your nose but spread to other parts of your body if you have a cold or flu and are sneezing often. So there is a risk but you will not automatically catch MRSA from an infected partner. The risk is different if they have an active MRSA infection on their face anywhere, with transfer more likely.

Is it safe to have sex if you are an MRSA carrier or have an infection

It is more risky in terms of a possible infection in the future. But there are ways to lower the risk. MRSA sexually transferred during intimacy, to your skin, from the armpits and groin will often only live on you for a short while. Showering and a thorough clean after sexual activity will lower your risk.

Other articles about catching MRSA

What about oral sex and MRSA?

As the groin is one area where MRSA will often ‘hide’ it is an infection hotspot. The proximity of another hotspot – the nose – during oral sex activity heightens the risk of cross infection between the two sexual partners.

Remember – Staph bacteria is very common

It’s also worth remembering that 35% of people may have the easier to treat staph aureus bacteria on their skin. We all mix with people who carry staph bacteria – so sex with an MRSA carrier is more risky mainly because it is harder to treat and sometimes more aggressive in atacking our skin and any wounds we may have. Multiple sex partners also exposes you to more risk.

Do you or your partner have other health issues?

If you or your partner has a current wound or skin rash, special care will be needed. Hibiclens can be used as a whole body bacteria cleanse. It’s not foolproof but it will help. Make sure the groin and armpits are thoroughly done.



  1. Data does not exist to answer the question of whether MRSA is transmitted through oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse.

    • Infection Watch Infection Watch

      Common sense would suggest skin transfer


  2. […] arms and in the groin area. Sexual intimacy will often be a way that the bacteria is transferred. Discover more here. Showering after sex will be one way that the transmission chain is broken before it can become […]

  3. I have just been test positive for staph, is it healthy for sex with my partner ?

    • Dave Roberts Dave Roberts

      Do you have an active skin infection? Also – many people carry Staph on their skin and this can transfer to the skin of others but may not result in active infections. You and your partner will be at higher risk because of intimacy but showering thoroughly after sex can reduce this considerably.

  4. star star

    Is it ok to have sex if you’re being treated? I’m currently being treated for MRSA under my breasts. I don’t know if I have it for sure bc, I went to the doctor, but I didn’t have any open sores for her to test. But she thinks, by the looks of the infected area, that it’s MRSA and decided to treat me for it before it got worse. She gave me antibiotics to take and a lotion to put on and also told me to wear a loose cotton shirt to bed. So since I’m being treated for it and…..well may not actually even have it, is it safe for my boyfriend and I to have sex? Would it be better if I kept the shirt on?

    • Dave Dave

      You may have it on other parts of your body. It may not be MRSA, it might just be an ordinary staph infection. Ordinary staph bacteria is very common. Even if your partner gets it on their skin they may not get an active infection.

      There are a lot of maybe’s – the best way to respond is to both shower after sex with particular emphasis on the face, groin and underarms


  5. gak gak

    My friend had MRSA in while in the hospital 3 years ago. They treated her for the MRSA and she shows no symptoms. Can we have sex, without it spreading to me?

    • Dave Roberts Dave Roberts

      She may still be a carrier or she may have become a carrier again since then. You may be a carrier. The only way to know is to tested. Even if one of you is carrier that may not turn into an active infection


  6. […] period? MRSA Treatment – A Simple Guide Someone I know has MRSA – Should I be worried? Will sex mean my partner gets it? Will I die because of MRSA? Why do I keep getting reinfected? Can I catch MRSA from skin contact? […]

  7. Melanie Stevens Melanie Stevens

    My partner has MRSA and got a sore on his penis, its close to his stomach but definately on his penis. He’s already been treated, and the white core from the center of the sore has been removed and he’s been on antibiotics for over a week. The sore is healing, you can tell for sure because of the way it looks and because it itches. Is it safe for us to have sex? How long does the open wound remain contagious? How likely is it that I would catch MRSA? And if we did have sex, and if I did get it does that mean a sore would start on the inside of my body?

    • admin admin

      Mmmm – full intercourse is probably not a good idea until it heals. The groin area is a place where mrsa ‘hides’ so you could become a carrier and infect yourself with high chance of an infection from any small cut, graze or abrasion.


  8. latisha Burrece latisha Burrece

    so lets say somebody had a staph infection over 4 years ago and they completly got rid of it and never got it again. Does that mean that they still have it or does it mean that it would be eaiser for them to catch it if their around somebody that currently has it?

    • admin admin

      They may still be carrying it in their nostrils. only a test will tell. Being around someone …. doesn’t make a lot of difference whether you have had it before or not. You can catch it again.


  9. Joseph Dominquez Joseph Dominquez

    I have been suffering from a chronic illness with cellulites and i have started a severe rash all over my body and it has caused scars and bleeding would it be the first signs of mrsa

    • admin admin

      Cellulitis makes you very vulnerable to infections such as MRSA. You need an expert opinion from a doctor who can inspect your wounds

      Dave Roberts
      MRSA Questions

  10. If someone had a staph infection years ago resulting from an back operation, do they still have it. Is it dormant and what chance of a reoccurance.

    • admin admin

      There are 2 possibilities. MRSA colonization in the nose is one. But the source of this could be very varied and not relate to the previous infection. There is some literature that suggests that bloodstream infections can ‘switch off’ and become dormant. I’m not sure there is a measure of how often they reappear but it is likely to be another major illness trauma that reawakens them.

      This is my reading of several articles. Always seek expert medical opinion however.

      Dave Roberts.

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