Herpes Simplex

Also called: HSV

Herpes is an infection that is caused by a herpes simplex virus (HSV). Oral herpes causes cold sores around the mouth or face. Genital herpes affects the genitals, buttocks or anal area. Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease (STD). It affects the genitals, buttocks or anal area. Other herpes infections can affect the eyes, skin, or other parts of the body. The virus can be dangerous in newborn babies or in people with weak immune systems.

There are two types of HSV:

  • HSV type 1 most commonly causes cold sores. It can also cause genital herpes.
  • HSV type 2 is the usual cause of genital herpes, but it also can infect the mouth.

HSV spreads through direct contact. Some people have no symptoms. Others get sores near the area where the virus has entered the body. They turn into blisters, become itchy and painful, and then heal.

Most people have outbreaks several times a year. Over time, you get them less often. Medicines to help your body fight the virus can help lessen symptoms and decrease outbreaks.

Symptoms of Herpes Simplex

The following features are indicative of Herpes Simplex:
  • sores
  • painful blisters
  • tingling
  • itching
  • burning sensation
It is possible that Herpes Simplex shows no physical symptoms and still is present in a patient.

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Common Causes of Herpes Simplex

The following are the most common causes of Herpes Simplex:
  • herpes simplex virus-1
  • herpes simplex virus-2

Risk Factors for Herpes Simplex

The following factors may increase the likelihood of Herpes Simplex:
  • being woman
  • multiple sexual partners

Prevention of Herpes Simplex

Yes, it may be possible to prevent Herpes Simplex. Prevention may be possible by doing the following:
  • avoid sexual contact with infected person
  • make use of a condom while having sex

Occurrence of Herpes Simplex

Number of Cases

The following are the number of Herpes Simplex cases seen each year worldwide:
  • Very common > 10 Million cases

Common Age Group

Herpes Simplex most commonly occurs in the following age group:
  • Aged between 20-50 years

Common Gender

Herpes Simplex can occur in any gender.

Lab Tests and Procedures for Diagnosis of Herpes Simplex

The following lab tests and procedures are used to detect Herpes Simplex:
  • Viral culture: To examine a tissue sample or scraping of the sores in the laboratory
  • Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test: To copy DNA from a sample of the blood or a tissue from a sore or spinal fluid
  • Blood test: To detect the presence of HSV

Doctor for Diagnosis of Herpes Simplex

Patients should visit the following specialists if they have symptoms of Herpes Simplex:
  • Primary care doctor
  • Gynecologist

Complications of Herpes Simplex if untreated

Yes, Herpes Simplex causes complications if it is not treated. Below is the list of complications and problems that may arise if Herpes Simplex is left untreated:
  • other sexually transmitted infections
  • newborn infection
  • bladder problems
  • meningitis
  • rectal inflammation

Procedures for Treatment of Herpes Simplex

The following procedures are used to treat Herpes Simplex:
  • no methods

Patient Support for Treatment of Herpes Simplex

The following actions may help Herpes Simplex patients:
  • Communicate with your partner: Talk to your partner about the disease
  • Education: Learn how to live with this disease and reduce the chances of infection
  • Join a support group: Join a support group online to learn about other's experiences

Time for Treatment of Herpes Simplex

While time-period of treatment for each patient may vary, below is the typical time-period for Herpes Simplex to resolve if treated properly under an expert supervision:
  • In 1 - 4 weeks

Is Herpes Simplex Infectious?

Yes, Herpes Simplex is known to be infectious. It can spread across people via the following means:
  • direct contact
  • sexual contact

Last updated date

This page was last updated on 2/04/2019.
This page provides information for Herpes Simplex.
Cold Sores
Genital Herpes
Sexually Transmitted Diseases

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