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Herpes (herpes)

Herpes is an infectious disease that causes painful, red, swollen, water-filled blisters on the skin and mucous membranes caused by the virus called Herpes Simplex Virus. There are eight types of Herpes Simplex virus, and the two most common types are clinically encountered.

What are the types of Herpes Simplex?

While HSV 1 is mostly observed in the mouth, nose and surroundings, HSV 2 is located in the genital area.

How do the strains of Herpes Simplex affect the organs?

HSV 1 forms blisters filled with water on the face, lips, nose and mouth. These blisters open in a very short time and become ulcerated and tend to merge with other small ulcers nearby. These wounds, which are then irrigated, crust over. The shells are yellow and white in color. Then the crusts soften and fall off on their own. It leaves a brown stain in places at first. It then turns into a brown mark. HSV 2 involves the genital area. The groin may involve the outer lips of the vagina in women, the inner part, the area between the anus and the vagina, the cervix, the part of the penis especially close to the body in men, rarely the glans, testicles, and buttocks.

How is it found?

Herpes virus is transmitted by contact. Viruses are transmitted in line with contact with the person carrying the virus, such as kissing, sexual intercourse, using the same towel. Viruses enter the body through cracks in the skin and mucous membranes. Then they begin to form lesions on the skin or mucous membranes of that area. Viruses do not die where they settle. The treatments can be done not to destroy the viruses, but to prevent or at least reduce the disease.

What should be considered especially for genital herpes?

It should not be forgotten that the virus is acquired by sexual contact in genital herpes called HSV 2, and other diseases that can be transmitted by sexual contact should also be considered. Because, some other viral diseases that can be transmitted and dangerous as easily as HSV 2 virus may have been acquired from the same person (such as hepatitis, AIDS, syphilis…). For this reason, it would be correct to screen other sexually transmitted diseases with tests in individuals with HSV 2.

Risk factors for contracting HSV-2 infection

Increasing number of sexual partners

advancing age

low income

low level of education

Being of black or Hispanic ethnicity

being a woman

male homosexual activity

HIV infection

How does the disease occur and progress?

Shortly after the virus is taken (in the range of 2 to 12 days), water-filled sacs and itchy lesions begin to form. More than half of the individuals who come into contact with the virus do not have any complaints. The patient has taken the virus that causes the disease into his body and has settled in the nervous system. It transmits the virus to individuals with whom it has sexual intercourse. In any case where the immune system is suppressed, symptoms of the disease will appear. Sometimes the patient does not experience this process at all. However, the carrier of the virus continues. Sometimes they experience at least four separate attacks per year.

In what situations does the disease manifest itself?

In case of insufficient nutrition, excessive vitamin A intake, excessive alcohol consumption, periods of intense stress, flu etc. In some diseases that tire the immune system, such as menstrual periods, frequent sexual intercourse, and personal hygiene disorders, the disease begins to recur. Symptoms of the disease can last up to 20 days, and women may experience symptoms such as discharge and painful sexual intercourse due to wounds in the cervix during this period.

What can be done in cases such as contact with the disease during pregnancy or the recurrence of the disease during this period?

Termination of pregnancy may be considered in cases where the virus is newly acquired and active infection is experienced. There is no danger to the fetus in individuals who have previously received the disease and have been immunized. If these pregnant women experience recurrence of the disease during their pregnancy, no treatment is applied, only supportive approaches are adopted. In pregnant women who have had genital herpes close to birth, if the birth starts while the lesions are present, cesarean section should be preferred in these pregnant women to prevent the baby from contacting the virus. In addition, great care should be taken to minimize the baby’s contact with this virus after birth.


– From the complaint

– Clinical findings (watery, itchy crusts immediately or inflamed, water-filled vesicles)

– Diagnosis can be made with laboratory findings.

Is it possible to treat herpes virus, what can be done?

A complete cure for the Herpes Virus is not possible. Therefore, first of all, it is necessary to take care not to get the virus. In case of contracting the disease or to prevent relapse, we should strengthen the immune system and take care to stay away from situations such as excessive alcohol, excessive fatigue, malnutrition, and stress. One of the biggest problems of disease lesions is that they can be easily re-infected with bacteria and become deeper, wider and more scarring ulcers. For this reason, we should stay away from hand contact as much as possible, prefer paper towels in the period of active lesions and avoid contact. In the presence of bacteria, we should use antibiotics under the supervision of a doctor. All wounds in the genital area are important. The most frightening thing here is the possibility that other diseases can be mistaken for herpes. For this reason, a dermatologist examination is absolutely necessary for the wound observed in each genital area. In addition, another important point is that the presence of herpes infection increases the risk of transmission of other sexually transmitted diseases.