Genital herpes occurs when the herpes simplex virus (usually herpes simplex virus type 2) affects the genitals (eg, vagina, vulva, penis, scrotum, testicles).
Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1)is a related herpes virus that typically causes cold sores and fever blisters in and around the mouth.
Did you know that itching, burning, tingling, bumps, or swelling in or around the genital area can be a sign of genital herpes (genital herpes)? genital herpes is an infection caused by the herpes simplex virus, and is almost always sexually transmitted. While genital herpes is often mistaken for some other condition, the symptoms of genital herpes often return over time. Read on to learn more about the symptoms of genital herpes.
Some people with genital herpes may mistake their symptoms for a simple irritation of the skin, razor burn, jock itch, or even a yeast infection. Others may think that their symptoms are the result of tigenital herpest clothing, heavy sweating, or from an allergic reaction to laundry detergent. People also often assume that because the symptoms may not seem very intense, and because they tend to go away after several days, that it’s not “serious” enougenital herpes to be something like genital herpes.
Unfortunately, many people avoid seeing their healthcare provider and “write off” their recurring symptoms for years, possibly exposing partners to the virus, and avoiding an opportunity to seek relief for their symptoms with medication.
If you’ve tried to treat your symptoms with prescription or over-the-counter topical medications and the symptoms recur, you may want to see a healthcare professional about getting tested for genital herpes. If you have genital herpes, your doctor may prescribe an oral antiviral medication that can treat your symptoms.
You should consult your doctor as soon as possible if you have experienced or are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Itching, burning, or tingling in or around the genital area
- Aches or pains in or around the genital area
- A rash, bumps, blisters, cuts, or sores in or around the genital area
- Vaginal or penile discharge
- Burning and/or pain when urinating
- Flu-like symptoms such as headache, fever, and swollen glands
The symptoms and severity of genital herpes outbreaks can vary greatly from person to person. Some people experience severe outbreaks, with very painful burning and sores in the genital area, while others have milder symptoms such as itching and redness during an outbreak, or no symptoms at all. In fact, among the estimated 50 million Americans who have genital herpes, 90% don’t even realize they have the disease and could be spreading the virus without knowing it.
The symptoms of genital herpes may first appear a long time after the person has contracted the disease—he or she may have contracted it from a sexual partner long ago. Their partner may have genital herpes without knowing it—he or she may have passed it on without showing signs of the disease.
genital herpes symptoms can appear in various areas of the body. Once you have been infected with the herpes virus, the virus enters the body, travels to the bundle of nerves at the base of the spine, and lies dormant (inactive). Once the virus becomes active, it travels along nerve paths back to the surface of the skin, where it may cause an outbreak. The nerves in the buttocks, genital area, and upper thigenital herpess are connected. Therefore an outbreak can occur in any of the following areas:
- Scrotum or testicles
- Thigenital herpes
Remember, many people do not have the “typical” genital herpes sores (lesions). Symptoms vary by individual and may vary from outbreak to outbreak. If you have any burning, itching, pain, cracks (fissures) in the skin, swelling, and/or blistering in or around your genitals, buttocks, anus, or thigenital herpes area, you should see a healthcare professional or go to a sexual health clinic as soon as possible. genital herpes outbreaks have also been mistaken for other conditions such as urinary tract infections, rougenital herpes sex, abrasions, ingrown hair follicles, hemorrhoids, or insect bites.
What distinguishes genital herpes from these conditions is the fact that the symptoms may return over time and in the same location even thougenital herpes you thougenital herpest you had gotten rid of them. If you have experienced any of these types of symptoms, you should see a healthcare professional. Diagnostic tests that can more accurately diagnose genital herpes are now available.
Avoid touching or scratching these affected areas because your fingernails may introduce bacteria and cause a bacterial infection. Applying over-the-counter topical medications or natural remedies to the area may worsen your symptoms and could potentially make the diagnosis more difficult. Also, you may carry the infection from one part of your body to another part.