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Studies show that genital herpes simplex virus is common. In the United States, one out of five of the total adolescent and adult population are infected with herpes simplex virus. There are two types of herpes simplex viruses (HSV). HSV type 2 is the one that most commonly causes genital herpes . You can get HSV type 2 during sexual contact with someone who has a genital HSV-2 infection. The infection causes painful sores on the genitals in both men and women. HSV type 1 is the herpes virus that is usually responsible for cold sores of the mouth, the so-called " fever blisters." You get HSV-1 by coming into contact with the saliva of an infected person. However, HSV type 1 can cause genital herpes, usually caused by oral-genital sexual contact with a person who has the oral HSV-1 infection, and HSV type 2 can cause cold sores. Herpes can be treated but not cured. Symptoms appear briefly and then disappear; the disease lies dormant in nerve cells, but it may be reactivated by str...
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...
The first symptom is usually one-sided pain, tingling, or burning. The pain and burning may be severe and is usually present before any rash appears.
Red patches on the skin, followed by small blisters, form in most people.
The blisters break, forming small ulcers that begin to dry and form crusts. The crusts fall off in 2 to 3 weeks. Scarring is rare.
The rash usually involves a narrow area from the spine around to the front of the belly area or chest.
The rash may involve face, eyes, mouth, and ears.
Additional symptoms may include:
Difficulty moving some of the muscles in the face
Drooping eyelid ( ptosis )
Fever and chills
Loss of eye motion
Swollen glands (lymph nodes)
You may also have pain, muscle weakness, an...
You should know
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