An Overview of Genital Herpes
Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2, also known as genital herpes or HSV-2, is a very common virus affecting one in five adults in the United States. However, up to 90% of those infected are unaware of their status.
Genital herpes is characterized by blisters or lesions located on the genital area. The lesions are usually red, painful, and fluid-filled. Genital herpes can also be transferred orally and cause cold sores on the mouth and lips.
Genital herpes symptoms in women can occur in the vaginal area, buttocks, external genitalia, anus, or cervix. Herpes symptoms in men can occur on the penis, scrotum, anus, buttocks, or inside the urethra.
STDtesting.com, a division of the Institute of Sexual Health, uses a 99.9 percent accurate, type-specific antibody test to detect the presence of genital herpes or HSV-2. This test can differentiate between oral herpes (HSV-1) and genital herpes (HSV-2) infections. Positive results can be detected as early as three to six weeks after potential exposure.
Although there is no cure for oral herpes, outbreaks can be managed with medication.