Genital herpes simplex is an incurable sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV). There are two distinct subtypes of HSV: Type 1 and Type 2. While Type 2 is most commonly associated with genital infection, Type 1 has also been found to cause genital infection but is more commonly associated with oral herpes (cold sores). After the initial infection, HSV remains dormant in certain nerve cells of the affected area of the body for life. The dormant virus may reactivate and cause recurrences.
Most infected individuals experience no symptoms or mild symptoms and may never know they are infected. When symptoms do occur, they are usually most severe during the first episode and may include:
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