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  • Genital herpes. It sounds pretty scary and full on doesn’t it? Truth is, it’s a common infection and one that can be easily managed with medication.

Genital Herpes

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What is genital herpes?

Genital herpes is a viral infection that can cause blisters to form on the skin on and around the genitals and buttocks. In men these blisters can appear on the penis and scrotum, around the anus, and across the buttocks. Usually, the symptoms of genital herpes progress like this:
  • The infected area of skin starts to tingle or itch before any blisters emerge
  • Hard and painful spots appear on the skin, and they grow into blisters, often filled with a clear fluid
  • The blisters burst to become sores, leaking fluid which then dries and forms a crust
  • Over time the blisters heal, and the skin is left unscarred
The following symptoms can also accompany an outbreak of genital herpes, particularly the first time:
  • Headache
  • Body aches
  • Fever
  • Swollen glands
If you’re infected with the virus that causes genital herpes, it stays in your body. This means that after the first outbreak of blisters clears up, you will still be infected as the virus able to become active again and cause another outbreak of blisters. On average, outbreaks happen again four to five times in the first two years of infection, but over time they tend to become less frequent and less severe. Medications like valaciclovir (also sold under the brand name Valtrex) can help to manage future outbreaks by limiting their severity, and by helping your body clear them up faster. Herpes infections are passed between people most often by skin-to-skin contact, and because genital herpes can be transmitted by sex it’s classed as a sexually transmitted infection (STI). It’s one of the most common STIs, with an estimated 3.7 billion people under the age of 50 worldwide thought to be infected by the two herpes viruses that cause genital herpes.

What are the causes of genital herpes?

Genital herpes is caused by an infection of a herpes simplex virus (HSV). There are two HSV infections that can cause genital herpes with HSV-2 being the most common virus. However, the HSV-1 virus that causes cold sores on the face can also cause genital herpes. Both of the herpes simplex viruses are passed between people by skin-to-skin contact. Once on someone’s skin, they get into the body through openings like the mouth, vagina, or anus. The virus then infects the cells around the opening, causing the blisters to erupt on the skin. Your body will fight the virus, with the blisters usually clearing up after a couple of weeks. Unfortunately, that’s not the end of it. Your body hasn’t actually defeated the virus because it infects the nerve cells in the skin. The virus can go dormant; it will go to sleep and hide from your immune system and medication. The bad news is that the virus stays in these nerve cells for life. The good news is that most of the time it doesn’t show any symptoms. It can however reactivate at any time, causing another outbreak of blisters. These outbreaks can be triggered by:
  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Another infection
  • Weakened immune system
  • Changes in hormones

How do our genital herpes treatments work?

FromMars is a registered UK pharmacy, so you can order genital herpes medication from us online if approved by our doctors. Valaciclovir is the active ingredient in Valtrex, an antiviral medication formulated to treat herpes simplex infections. FromMars provides valaciclovir as a daily suppressive treatment for patients who have already been diagnosed with herpes, to help lessen the frequency of outbreaks and reduce the risk of transmitting the virus. Any accompanying symptoms such as pain or itching should also be reduced. Valaciclovir won’t completely cure herpes infections, as there is no known cure, but they’re a medically proven way to manage outbreaks.

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