Details about the features of herpes on the labia
Herpes on the labia is a manifestation of herpes infection, which occurs in one of three forms, namely, a relapse of the disease, primary or secondary infection with genital herpes. Localization in the area of the labia has the peculiarity of leading to some consequences if it is not treated in time. You will learn about possible complications, treatment methods, symptoms, as well as the causes of recurrence and infection below. And now we will talk in more detail about the important features of the causative agent of this infection.
PATIENT AND ITS FEATURES
The causative agents of genital herpes are two strains of the herpes virus. The first is the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV – 1), the second is the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV – 2). Both of these strains are called herpes simplex in medicine. The first strain of HSV is called labial, it most often occurs in the area of the lips, it is also called herpes on the lips, and the second strain is genital herpes. Despite this, herpetic lesions of the labia can be caused by both the first and second types of HSV.
Let’s look at some of the features of this pathogen:
after infection, the body cannot be completely cured of the virus;
it can be suppressed and with a good immune system, the virus may never manifest itself;
if you have never had herpes sores, this does not mean that the person is not infected;
HSV type 2 is present in 400 million people worldwide;
HSV type 1 is infected about 90% of the world’s population;
in 85% of people who are infected with the genital form, the virus is chronic and does not manifest itself in any way throughout life;
HSV of both the first and the second type can be transmitted through the placenta from a pregnant woman to a child.
In some cases, genital herpes during pregnancy can be dangerous for the fetus, so if herpes occurs on the labia during pregnancy, you should familiarize yourself with this topic in more detail.
ROUTES OF TRANSMISSION AND CAUSES OF INFECTION
With herpes infection, there are several reasons for infection and relapse, but we will focus on the main ones, which are associated with genital herpes, localized on the genitals.
Primary infection. Primary infection occurs during sexual intercourse, if we are talking about herpes on the labia. It can be oral sex if the partner has herpes on the chin or lip. In this case, HSV of the first type will be transmitted, which subsequently manifests itself on the genitals. With other sexual intercourse, as a rule, HSV type 2 is transmitted. It has the same symptoms.
Secondary infection. If a woman is already a carrier, then with re-infection, the likelihood of a relapse of the disease is very high. That is, when a woman’s immune system is working well and the virus in the body is constantly suppressed, during sexual intercourse with a person who has a recurrence of genital herpes, the virus may appear.
Recurrent herpes. Recurrence of herpes on the labia, usually occurs due to a decrease in the body’s defense mechanisms. The immune system can no longer cope with the multiplication of the herpes virus, and it gets out. There are many reasons for the violation of immunity, and all of them can lead to a recurrence of genital herpes if there is a chronic course of HSV type 2.
The above are the main reasons, but there are others. For example, with herpes on the hands, the virus can spread to the labia during contact. In rare cases, herpes infection can be transmitted by airborne droplets, this applies to the herpes simplex virus of the first type, especially if the partner has herpetic stomatitis. In very rare cases, infection through household items is possible.
Herpes on the labia does not differ in specific symptoms. It looks the same on both the labia minora and the labia majora. The only thing is that on the labia minora, a herpetic rash gives more discomfort.
Consider the general picture of signs of herpes infection in the external genital area:
there is an increase in the inguinal lymph nodes;
sometimes the temperature rises to 38 degrees;
frequent and uncomfortable urination;
itching and redness in the labia area;
blistering rash on the genitals;
the rash is painful and itchy.
Since this is a venereal disease, it is treated by a venereologist. A herpetic rash can be confused with other infections, therefore, if in doubt about the accuracy of the diagnosis, the venereologist prescribes tests to detect antibodies to the herpes virus and to its DNA in the body. But often the doctor will diagnose by examining the external symptoms.
HOW A HERPETIC RASH LIKE ON THE LIPS
In the photo under number 1, you can see that the herpetic rash on the labia does not differ from the rash on other areas of the skin. For a more detailed examination of herpes blisters, a close-up of the rash is shown in the photo under No. 2. HSV herpetic vesicles give approximately the same symptoms in any localization.
Today we will look at how herpes on the labia is treated with medications. HSV treatment occurs according to the same scheme for any strain, if there are no features. For example, in women during pregnancy or in children, the treatment will be adjusted. If we consider standard drug therapy, then the main antiherpetic drugs should be distinguished:
Some of these drugs are analogs, for example, Acyclovir and Zovirax, and also have both ointments and tablets in their assortment. Treatment of a herpes infection is easy, especially if you start it on time. A venereologist can also prescribe antihistamines and immunomodulators to increase the body’s protective functions, which will allow the infection to heal faster, or rather, to suppress the virus. There are no specific methods for the treatment of herpes infection of the external genital organs.
You need to understand that herpes on the labia can go into the reproductive system, especially if it is not treated in time. At the same time, vaginal herpes requires additional therapy. But the infection can spread even deeper and lead to complications such as infertility.
Another danger of genital herpes is the course of infection during pregnancy, it can affect not only the fetus, but also the condition of the pregnant woman. For the fetus, the primary infection of the mother, or a relapse before childbirth, is especially dangerous.
Summing up, it is worth noting that the manifestation of herpes infection on the external field organs in women is not the most dangerous form of the course of genital herpes, it is much worse if the infection gets into the reproductive system. Therefore, the importance of timely treatment of this herpetic localization is difficult to overestimate.