What you need to know about herpes
Knowing if you have a sexually transmitted disease is important for your health, as well as those you are with in intimate situations.
More than 750,000 people in the U.S. get new herpes infections each year, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Many people are unaware they have herpes because they have no symptoms or their symptoms are very mild.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), some of the symptoms of a herpes outbreak include:
- Tingling, itching or burning prior to blisters appearing
- Sores and blisters will appear and oftentimes they will ooze fluid.
- Flu-like symptoms
- Problems urinating
- Eye infection
During an outbreak, do not touch the sores or fluids to avoid spreading herpes to other parts of the body. If you touch the sores or fluids, immediately wash your hands thoroughly, according to the AAD.
While there is no cure for herpes, symptoms will come and go, but medication can help prevent or shorten outbreaks, experts say.
“Oral medication is given for outbreaks and during childbirth,” says Dr. Endale Mekonen, an infectious disease physician at Advocate Trinity Hospital in Chicago. “If you are experiencing an outbreak, there is a chance you can pass it to your newborn.”
About the Author
health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Health Care and Aurora Health Care sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.