Genital Herpes: Treatment, Procedure, Cost and Side Effects
Last Updated: Nov 01, 2021
What is the treatment?
Genital herpes is a very common sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the HSV virus (herpes simplex virus). Herpetic sores, itching, painful blisters and ulcer formation in your genital area are some of the common symptoms of genital herpes. Genital herpes viruses are of two types, HSV-1 that generally causes cold sores and HSV-2 which causes genital herpes.
There is absolutely no permanent cure for genital herpes. Once the virus gets inside your body, you can only use medication to manage outbreaks. HSV virus can remain dormant for years and can also have outbreaks in every two months. Self care and antiviral drugs are the only mode of treatment to manage outbreaks. Once you are infected with genital herpes, it can remain dormant or active in your body for life.
What does Genital Herpes look like?
Genital Herpes generally is asymptomatic, but in some cases when the symptoms start to appear, it is referred to as outbreaks. These are present in the form of clusters of sores or blisters which are itchy and painful. They appear as sacs that are fluid-filled and of different sizes. Occurring at different places, they eventually bleed or secrete a white-colored fluid.
Does herpes make you smell?
Herpes is associated with a thick white or cloudy discharge from the genital organs of males as well as females. It is the most common symptom of herpes and is accompanied by a characteristic smell that is strong and pungent. The odor feels fishy that generally comes out when an infected person has sexual intercourse.
How is the treatment done?
Since there is no permanent cure for genital herpes, the treatment only consist of self care and antiviral drugs. Medications for genital herpes is taken orally and in some cases can also be injected. It is used to reduce the duration and severity of the outbreak. Some of the most common antiviral drugs used in treating genital herpes are Acyclovir, Famcyclovir and Valacyclovir. Some topical medications are also available in the market but they are not very much effective as compared to oral medications.
Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)
You will have flu like symptoms if are infected with HSV virus such as fever, body aches, chills and in some cases swollen lymph nodes. If you are having symptoms like this then you must visit a doctor for a viral culture test or Nucleic acid amplification. It can develop at any age and is generally a sexual transmitted disease.
Who is not eligible for the treatment?
All person who are infected with HSV are eligible for the treatment. Even in case of pregnancy there are oral antiviral medications that can be taken.
How bad is Genital Herpes?
Genital Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease that occurs commonly and is usually asymptomatic. In case the symptoms appear, they start to show as blisters or sores, which may be painful or have a burning sensation. These cause discomfort or embarrassment to the affected person. The infection seeks consultation with a doctor as soon as the outbreaks occur.
What happens if herpes is left untreated?
Although herpes is asymptomatic in most cases and usually doesn’t cause any complications, treatment is needed in case of any symptoms. Outbreaks that occur most commonly in the form of blisters and sores are painful and recurrent in nature. In some cases they are healed spontaneously, otherwise, they need a consultation with a doctor. It is curable but can occur again and again in absence of proper treatment.
Are there any side effects?
There are absolutely no side effects of antiviral medications used in treating genital herpes. Patients, who are on medication daily in case of suppressive treatment only experiences some very minor and mild side effects such as indigestion, itching, dry mouth and irritation. These side effects are very common for antiviral drugs and generally last for a day or two.
What are the post-treatment guidelines?
Since there is no treatment, there are no post treatment guidelines. Self care is the only treatment as well as post treatment guidelines.
How long does it take to recover?
Genital herpes cannot be cured and hence there is no recovery time for this disease. If you are infected with HSV, you will have the virus and the disease lifelong. Only the severity and duration of the outbreak can be reduced.
How long does herpes last on the genitals?
Herpes appears as an outbreak, in the form of blisters or sores on the genitalia. The longevity of these outbreaks varies from one to two weeks generally, though in some cases they may survive longer. The infection usually does not cause any serious health issues and gets healed spontaneously without any need for treatment. However, several home remedies or certain medications may help by reducing the symptoms.
What is the price of the treatment in India?
The price of the antiviral drugs used to treat genital herpes are not very expensive. Some of the medicines starts at INR 87 and can go up to INR 400.
Are the results of the treatment permanent?
There is no cure for genital herpes and hence the result of the treatment is not applicable.
What are the alternatives to the treatment?
There are a number of homeopathic drugs that can be used as an alternative for genital herpes. Some of the most common and effective homeopathic medicines are Natrum Mur, petroleum, and Hepar sulph. Ayurveda is also very effective for genital herpes. Some of the very effective Ayurvedic medicines are Kanchnaar guggul, Phyllanthus Niruri, neem, and curcumin capsules.
Summary: Genital Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease that occurs commonly and is usually asymptomatic. It appears as an outbreak, in the form of blisters or sores on the genitalia and associated with a thick white or cloudy discharge from the genital organs of males as well as females along with a strong and pungent characteristic smell. Home remedies and self-care techniques are effective in treating the condition.
- Genital Herpes- Medline Plus, Health Topics, NIH, U.S. National Library of Medicine [Internet]. medlineplus.gov 2019 [Cited 30 July 2019]. Available from:
- Genital herpes- Medline Plus, Medical Encyclopedia, NIH, U.S. National Library of Medicine [Internet]. medlineplus.gov 2019 [Cited 30 July 2019]. Available from:
- Genital Herpes - CDC Fact Sheet (Detailed)- CDC, Centres for Disease Control and Prevention [Internet]. cdc.gov 2017 [Cited 30 July 2019]. Available from:
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