Herpes Simplex Infections
Alternate Names : Fever Blister, COLD Sore
What can be done to prevent the infection?
The herpes simplex virus can be passed from person to person. Someone
with oral herpes should not share lipstick, utensils, or drinks with others. Touching and
kissing can also spread the virus. Someone with genital herpes should use
during sexual activity to help prevent the spread of the infection. People who have
immune system problems or who have frequent recurrences often take antiviral drugs,
such as acyclovir
to help prevent reactivation. A doctor who specializes in the condition should monitor a
pregnancy complicated by HSV infection.
What are the long-term effects of the infection?
Most infections clear up in 3 weeks or less. But the infection is chronic
because the virus stays in the body forever. So, it may come back over and
over throughout the rest of the individual's life. Infection in newborn babies and people whose immune
systems are not working well can result in brain damage or death.
What are the risks to others?
Herpes infections are highly contagious and can be passed from one
person to another much like a cold
or the flu. Good hand washing,
wearing gloves, and avoiding direct contact can all help prevent the spread to others.