What is genital herpes?
Genital herpes is a common STD (Sexually transmitted disease) that can start as a painful bump or fluid filled blister in the genital area. Later, the lesion can break open and ooze fluid and leave a painful, tender sore that will heal over the next 1-2 weeks. Herpes can start as a single lesion or group of lesions. It can be a one time occurrence or a recurring breakout.
What is the cause of genital herpes?
Genital herpes is caused by a virus called HSV, herpes simplex virus, which has the tendency to attack the skin. The common skin areas affected by this virus are the oral and genital areas.
How is Herpes transmitted?
Herpes virus is usually transmitted by skin to skin contact with someone infected with the herpes virus.
What are the symptoms of someone infected with herpes?
Most individuals infected with herpes do not have any symptoms and are unaware of being infected with herpes at all. In other words, it can be a SILENT INFECTION!!!
How do herpes lesions look?
Herpes usually appears on the skin as a group of blisters on the border of the lips or genital area.
How can herpes be diagnosed?
If you have a new skin lesion then a swab sample can be obtained and a culture can confirm the diagnosis.
If someone has no lesions but he or she is concerned about a silent infection then a blood test can reveal a recent or remote infection of the herpes virus by checking the type of herpes antibodies present in blood.
Is there any difference between herpes of the lips and genital herpes?
Yes. There are two different types of herpes simplex viruses.
HSV type 1 usually causes oral and lip herpes and rarely is the cause of genital herpes.
HSV type 2 usually causes genital herpes and rarely is the cause of oral and lip herpes.
Is herpes of the lips and genitalia the same as shingles?
No, although both look like a group of blisters they are caused by different types of viruses.
What is my risk for other STDs if I’m infected with herpes?
Dr. Shafa recommends that any patient with one STD be tested for the other common STDs as well. This provides patient and doctor peace of mind.
We can offer complete STD/STI panel testing!!
You can be tested right here in our office for any symptom or concern you may be experiencing to ensure proper treatment for you and your partner. Testing can be as simple as clinical evaluation by Dr. Shafa, urine/blood analysis, culture, and biopsy.
Certain types of STDs can be treated immediately!
For certain STDs we can treat you in the office. A single injection or a single pill by mouth can take care of the infection completely.
For certain STDs we may also offer Expedited Partner Therapy. For this, we may provide prescriptions or medications for you to take home to your partner without Dr. Shafa first examining him or her.