Genital herpes is a viral infection (herpes simplex), rather than a bacterial infection. It can be passed on through sexual contact with a person who is having an outbreak of genital herpes at the time, or by contact with a herpes simplex sore.
What are the symptoms of Genital Herpes?
Some people will not experience symptoms, or they will be very mild; it usually takes several days after contact with the virus for any symptoms to become apparent, although in some people it can take much longer.
The symptoms of a Genital Herpes episode can include:
- Small blisters in the anal or genital area, which burst to leave small red sores which can be painful
- Pain when urinating
- Stinging, tingling, or itching in the genital area
- General feelings of malaise; flu-like symptom
What are the treatments for Genital Herpes?
Genital Herpes is a common STI caused by the Herpes Simplex virus. It causes painful blisters around the genitals and anus. Once caught, Genital Herpes is a long term problem and the virus cannot be eradicated. It can lie dormant in the body and become active again. Reoccurrences become less frequent and severe over time, but 4-5 outbreaks per year are common in the first 2 years.
Aciclovir can be provided to treat an outbreak of herpes to shorten the duration and severity. The normal treatment provided is aciclovir 200mg tablets, take one tablet five times a day for five days. In addition, a local anaesthetic ointment, lidocaine 5% ointment, can be prescribed to ease the pain and irritation of an outbreak. Lidocaine will not shorten the outbreak or affect its severity.
Aciclovir can also be provided on a longer-term basis to suppress herpes outbreaks. The normal treatment provided is aciclovir 400mg tablets, take one tablet twice a day for three months.
To have a convenient and confidential genital herpes consultation with a UK registered GP that could lead to prescription treatments, please click here.
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