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What to Know About Herpes Infection

Author Zizzur Staff. Published on July 7, 2011 - 1:01 am (5055 views — 448 words)

What is Herpes? A highly contagious viral infection known as "herpes" can be transmitted through direct skin contact from an infected person to other person. In fact, there are several types of herpes viruses existed today. But, the first two herpes infection indicated below are common and the others are seldom manifest by people today.

1. Herpes simplex viruses - HSV1 and HSV2
2. Varicella virus
3. Human cytomegalovirus
4. Epstein- Barr virus
5. Human herpes virus (a current discovery)

What is Herpes Simplex?
Herpes simplex is mainly a contagious type of infection caused by HS type 1 and type 2 viruses that can be easily transmitted from an infected individual with herpes outbreaks to other individual by skin-to skin contact. Herpes infections in the face, mount, eyes, throat , and in central nervous system is caused by the HS type 1 virus, as the herpes infections occur in the anogential regions is caused by the HS type2 virus. The HS type 2 virus, on the other hand, are subclinical type of herpes infection or don't sometimes manifest physical symptoms.

HSV is never eradicated from the body, but stays inactive and can reactivate, causing the symptoms. Additionally, placental transmission is possible especially if the mother is highly infected with herpes viruses. However, 60% - 80% of the HSV infections acquired by the newborns occur in women who do not have HSV infection symptoms or history of genital HSV infection.

Symptoms of Herpes Simplex:
•Ulcers or blisters. This is most often found on the lips, gums, mouth, or genitals
•Fever blisters
•Enlarged lymph nodes in groin or neck. Usually, this occurs during the primary stage of the disease process.
•Hyperthermia Typically, this can be felt during the primary stage of the disease.
•Lesions in the gentalias are burning and painful.

What is Herpes Zoster?
"Shingles" or in medical terminology the herpes zoster are viral infection in the nerve endings primarily caused by Varicella virus or the causative agent chicken pox. This occurs from the recurrence of inactive Varicella virus in the person’s body which is infected by chicken pox many years ago.

•The shingle rashes begin as red patches which will soon develop to blisters, often on just one side of the body. These blisters may be small or could become big. Normally, it takes 2-4 weeks before the rashes disappear, and eventually there is a scar formation.
•Blisters are very painful.

Acyclovir (Zovirax), Famciclovir (Famvir), and Valacyclovir (Valtrex) are mostly prescribed antiviral medications to treat the symptoms of the infection. This is given especially if it's already a prolonged herpes outbreak and if there is a recurrence of the symptoms. Analgesics are also prescribed to alleviate pain.