What is Genital Herpes?
Genital herpes can be defined as a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the herpes simplex viruses type 1 (HSV-1) or type 2 (HSV-2). Most genital herpes is caused by HSV-2. Many individuals have no signs or symptoms of the infection. When signs do occur, they typically appear as one or more blisters on or near the genitals or rectum. The blisters break open, leaving tender sores that may take two to four weeks to heal the first time they occur. Most often, another outbreak can appear weeks or months after the first, but it almost always is less severe than the first outbreak. And though the infection can stay in the body indefinitely, the number of outbreaks tends to decrease over the years.