Herpes (HSV-1 & HSV-2) STD Brief
These briefs are intended to give readers (specifically those readers who weren’t aware many of these STDs existed) an overview of each STD, their commonality, treatment options, and diagnostic tests available.
This information is by no means all-encompassing and The STD Project encourages using these briefs as primers and then further delving into the resources section when subsequent questions arise.
Herpes Symptoms, Test & Treatment
Common? Quite common – About 8 of every 10 adults has oral herpes and 1 of every 4 adults has genital herpes (Both forms of herpes can infect the oral area, the genital area, or both. When an infection is near the mouth, it is called oral herpes or HSV-1 and when an infection is near the genitals it is called genital herpes or HSV-2.) Around 750,000 to 1 million people infected in the U.S. annually
Symptoms Most people with genital herpes have no symptoms, have very mild symptoms that go unnoticed, or have symptoms but do not recognize them as a sign of infection. The most common herpes symptom is a cluster of blistery sores — usually on the vagina, vulva, cervix, penis, buttocks, or anus. Symptoms may last several weeks and go away. They may return in weeks, months, or years.
Cure? No cure – managed with medicine
Bacterial/Viral/ Fungal/Parasitic Viral
Test Sores examined and fluids from the sores tested, Blood test
Life-Threatening? No, however – though rare, contact with herpes sores during delivery can lead to a severe, life-threatening infection for the baby. Also, people with genital herpes have at least twice the risk of getting HIV if exposed to it than people without herpes
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Did this brief synopsis help clarify the STD or answer questions you had? Is there a category you’d like to see or something you think should be added to the quick overviews? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
- Think You Might Have an STD?
- Herpes In-Depth
- Detailed Herpes Symptoms
- Pictures of Herpes
- Looking for more information about herpes?
- Looking for STD testing centers, herpes treatment, STD hotlines, or STD blogs and forums?
- Would you like to read stories about people living with an STD?