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What is Herpes?
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Herpes Symptoms

Symptoms of genital herpes develop within 1 to 3 weeks after infection and are characterized by clusters of small, painful vesicles on or around the genitals. Soon after their initial appearance, they pop, leaving small sores and lesions. In men, the vesicles usually occur on the penis, sometimes – in the urethra or colon. In women, the affected areas are usually the vaginal lips, sometimes – the cervix or the anus area. The affected areas usually itch or burn.

After a while, these symptoms largely disappear, which leads many people to falsely conclude that they are cured. In reality, the virus lies dormant in the nervous system and another outbreak is pretty much guaranteed. Outbreaks occur with different frequency in different people. Some experience them once a month; others may not see one for a couple of years. Sometimes, an outbreak is accompanied by flu-like symptoms, such as muscle ache, headache or fever. An outbreak can be provoked by another disease, stress or even overheating.

An infected person in the midst of an outbreak is especially contagious: an uninfected partner has a 75% chance of contracting the disease during sexual contact. A person who has no symptoms may still be actively shedding the virus and, although the probability of infection is smaller, it is still possible.

‹‹ What is Herpes? Diagnosis of Herpes ››

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Random Useful Tip:
Epinephrine shot
If you are known to have a severe anaphylactic reaction, carry an epinephrine (adrenaline) shot with you at all times. Pay attention to expiration date and replace it regularly: upon expiration, it loses its effectiveness.

Random Drug Info:
Acyclovir is a medication that is used to treat herpes infections of the skin, lips and genitals, chicken pox and shingles. It comes in the form of ointments, tablets, capsules or liquids. It relieves pain and itchiness and promotes healing; however, it does not cure the condition. Possible (but not common) side effects include headaches, upset stomach, vomiting and diarrhea. Severe side effects, such as severe rash or itching, blood in the urine, stomach pain or fever are even less common, but require prompt medical attention.

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