The recurring appearance of blister and/or sores that appear around the genitals and/or rectum.



A sexually transmitted disease that appears as a blister or sore around the genitals or rectum region. They break leaving a sore, or ulcer that takes days to weeks to heal.

They recur though generally are less severe than the original outbreak.

The 'infection' remains within the body, though its appearance lessens over time and the number of outbreaks tends to diminish, as well.


Nationwide, in the USA, it is believed that 45 million people, from the age of 12 upwards, are infected with the HSV virus. Though the figures seem to be lowering.

HSV-2 is more common among women, approx 1 in 4, are infected while approx. 1 in 8 is the case for Males.

The number of infections may be due to the fact that HSV-2 is more likely transmitted by male to female, rather than female to male.


There are basically two viruses here, HSV-1 and HSV-2.

HSV-2 is caused by coming in contact, sexually, with an infected person.

While both viruses are contained within the fluid of the blisters, the virus can exist un detected just beneath the skin, and still be infectious.

HSV-1 generally is more like cold sores, appearing around the mouth and lips, but can be transmitted during oral sex. This transmission is to the genital area, especially when one is experiencing an outbreak.

Genital HSV-1 infection usually occurs less frequently than HSV-2 Herpes does, and less severe. It is mostly associated with cold sores, known as 'fever blisters'.

Practice (Associated Acts): Most infected by HSV-2 are not aware that they have been infected. However, some do experience some rather severe symptoms during their first outbreak, which can occur 2 weeks after the initial infection.

The sores generally heal within 2 to 4 weeks.

Some of the symptoms that can be experienced are fever, flu like symptoms, swollen glands, and secondary appearance of sores.

Many however, never realize they have been infected, due either to mistaking the original outbreak as a result of some irritant, minor common skin outbreak, or simply because there are no visible signs, other than perhaps a soreness, if that.

Noteworthy: There is no known cure for genital herpes.

If detected, it can be contained, however not eradicated.

Women should avoid infection during pregnancy as it can cause life threatening infections among new born babies.

Infected persons may be more susceptible to being infected by the HIV virus as well, as the immune system is already compromised. It can also make HIV infected persons, more infectious or more likely to pass on the HIV virus, if infected with HSV-2.

Other meanings

Determining if one is infected involves being tested. Usually a health care worker can sample the fluid of a blister, to determine if the HSV virus is present. This assumes that one is tested while having an outbreak of the blisters.

A blood test exists that can test for the presence of the virus antibodies, however it is not always clear in its results.

There are medications to help contain the virus, its outbreaks and severity, however there is NO CURE.

Prevention of infection requires use of barriers, such as condoms during intercourse. Obviously abstinence is another method, though impractical for those wishing to have sex.

Other prevention methods is to not engage in sex, during an outbreak, assuming you have visible signs, such as the blisters or sores.

It should be noted, even if one has no visible signs of an outbreak, they can still infect another person.

If one has been diagnosed as having Herpes, they should inform all potential sex partners of that infection, prior to sexual relations.

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