Posted on by Anna C. Has your new partner just informed you that he or she has herpes? People have many reactions when hearing this kind of news — and, depending on how informed you are about herpes, your reaction might be tinged with panic or fear. More than 80 percent of people with genital herpes are unaware of their infections.
Once a person is infected with HSV, the virus stays in the body for life. Genital herpes is an HSV infection of the groin, pubic area, genital area, anus, rectum or buttocks. All people who are sexually active may be at risk for genital herpes. Many people with genital herpes have no symptoms or the symptoms are very mild so they go unnoticed or are mistaken for another skin condition. The most common symptoms of genital herpes are lesions, which appear as painful blisters in the genital area. To test for genital herpes, samples are taken from the sites of suspected infection and tested for the presence of the virus. Antiviral medications can reduce the severity and frequency of genital herpes outbreaks.