About This Condition
Genital herpes is a common sexually transmitted viral infection characterized by fluid filled blisters or red bumps in the genital area.
Genital herpes is caused by either of two types of the herpes simplex virus (HSV). There is no known cure for herpes. Both conventional and alternative treatments only help in reducing the symptoms and frequency of outbreaks. Treatments effective for cold sores—which are also caused by the herpes virus—may or may not also be effective for genital herpes, because of possible differences in the type of herpes virus causing infections in different body locations.
People with genital herpes may have outbreaks of small, often painful, fluid-filled blisters (vesicles) in the genital or anal region. Fever, general weakness, and painful urination often accompany the initial occurrence. Subsequent outbreaks may appear with colds, fevers, menstrual periods, or during periods of stress,1 and usually disappear within two weeks. Initially there may be tingling or prickling at the site of the blisters even before they are visible, then the blisters often weep a clear fluid and form a scab.