SAN JOSE, CA (March 5, 2016) – Blake Flovin is a high school wrestler in California. He told KMAX he contracted a highly contagious form of herpes called herpes gladiatorum, commonly referred to as “mat herpes,” during a meet last month, and now the disease has ended his wrestling career.
The disease is spread by skin-to-skin contact and through saliva, and it remains in your body for life.
Now he’s afraid he may have spread that infection to other wrestlers while he was practicing; he wrote a letter to officials, asking them to postpone the wrestling tournament until the herpes incubation period is over, but they say it will still go on as regularly scheduled.
According to a recent nationwide study, wrestlers have the highest number of skin infections compared to other high school athletes. The study looked at 22 high school sports, and 73.6% of skin infections reported occurred during wrestling. The study recommends showering immediately after competition.
Flovin’s parents told KMAX they never knew about all the risks associated with wrestling, and now they want other parents to be aware.