Genital Herpes: Symptoms and Treatment
Genital herpes is among the most typical sexually transmitted illness in the U.S. It is brought on by the herpes simplex virus (HSV).
Most cases of genital herpes are brought on by infection by the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2).
Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) is more frequently the reason for cold sores or fever blisters. But it can likewise be a reason for genital herpes.
Most individuals with genital herpes have no idea they have it. That’s because in many people it produces either no symptoms or extremely moderate ones.
What Happens in an HSV Infection?
Genital herpes virus is passed from one person to another through sexual contact. This occurs even if the person with the virus does not have symptoms or signs of infection.
As soon as the virus enters through the skin, it travels along nerve paths. It might become dormant (non-active) in the nerves and remain there forever.
From time to time, the virus may end up being active. When that happens, the virus takes a trip back along the nerve path to the surface of the skin, where additional virus is shed.
Now the virus may cause an outbreak of symptoms. Or it may remain unnoticed.
In either case, the active virus is easily passed from one partner to another through sexual contact. Even using a prophylactic might not protect the uninfected partner. The virus can be present on skin that continues to be uncovered.
The number of recurrences or break outs a person can have may differ.
What Are the Symptoms of Genital Herpes?
Although you can still pass the infection, you might never see that you have symptoms from an HSV infection. On the other hand, you might discover symptoms within a couple of days to a few weeks after the initial contact. Or, you might not have a preliminary outbreak of symptoms till months or even years after ending up being infected.
When symptoms occur soon after an individual is infected, they tend to be severe. They might start as little blisters that eventually burst and produce raw, uncomfortable sores that scab and heal over within a couple of weeks. The blisters and sores might be accompanied by flu-like symptoms with fever and swollen lymph nodes.
Any of the following symptoms of a genital HSV infection can happen in a man or a woman:
- Split, raw, or red areas around your genital areas without pain, itching, or tingling
- Itching or tingling around your genitals or your anal area
- Small blisters that burst and cause uncomfortable sores. These may be on or around your genitals (penis or vagina) or on your buttocks, thighs, or rectal area. More rarely, blisters may occur inside the urethra– television urine goes through on its method from your body.
- Pain from urine passing over the sores– this is especially a problem in women.
- Flu-like symptoms, including fever, swollen lymph nodes, and fatigue
Genital herpes is not the only condition that can produce these symptoms. Often, HSV is mistaken for vaginal yeast infections, bacterial infections, or bladder infections. The only way to understand whether they are the result of HSV or another condition is to be inspected by a healthcare company.
Genital herpes is diagnosed with a physical exam and usually confirmed with a swab test or a blood test.
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Last modified: August 11, 2016