What is genital herpes?
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the
herpes simplex viruses (HSV) type 1 and type 2. Most genital herpes
is caused by HSV type 2.
Most people have no or minimal symptoms from HSV-1 or HSV-2
infection. When symptoms do occur, they usually appear as one or
more blisters on or around the genitals or rectum. The blisters
break, leaving ulcers or tender sores that may take up to four
weeks to heal. Typically, another outbreak can appear weeks or
Although the infection can stay in the body forever, the number
of outbreaks usually decreases over a period of years. You can pass
genital herpes to someone else even when you experience no
How common is genital herpes?
About 45 million Americans, age 12 and older have genital
herpes. Its estimated that up to one million people become
infected each year. Genital Herpes (HSV-2) is more common in women
How can I get genital herpes?
Herpes is a virus that can be...
I'm always amazed at the amount of
misinformation, or lack of information, that people have about Herpes. Often when I tell a new partner that I have
Herpes his response is a simple "I know nothing about that, so it doesn't
really bother me". I also hear
contrasting information from doctors. For example, just a couple weeks ago, a friend told me she was concerned
that she may have picked up an STD from a casual fling. Her doctor gave her tests for everything but
Herpes, saying that the Herpes test was too expensive to do and that if my friend
did, in fact, have the disease she would surely already know. I was suprised by the doctor's decision
given the statistics about the number of people who have the disease but don't
I told my friend about my
first six months with the disease in which I had a light rash above my
butt. It was so insignificant that I
tried to make an appointment with my dermatologist, thinking it was just an
allergic reaction. When I coul...
Recent studies suggest that 1 in 4 New Yorkers have genital herpes . Prior to this report, another study suggested that 1 in every 4 teens in America (between ages 14 and 19) has an STD. Clearly, with current levels of sexual awareness that we assume is actively present in the population - something is not connecting or resonating with the average New Yorker and teen, and probably the average person. Otherwise we'd have decreasing rather than increasing rates of herpes and STDS.
Let me first say that as a parent of a teen...and if you've read some of my earlier blogs, you know- kids and teens seem to be more worried about pregnancy (which actually has solutions) than about "catching herpes or an STD." Another thing I'm beginning to realize in general is that we all seem to think, "not me," or "one time can't possibly cause harm," or "I'm being generally careful," or some other intellectualization is happening, that we believe will somehow pro...
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