Dermatologist consulting a female patient, New York, NY

Herpes Simplex

Treatment for Herpes outbreaks

There are 2 types of herpes simplex virus – I and II. Herpes Simplex Virus Type I usually causes cold sores, while Type II causes sexually transmitted genital ulcers.

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Herpes infections present 2-20 days after contact with an infected person. Small painful blisters form on a red base, then burst leaving shallow ulcers which scab over. In general, a first episode can last between 7-10 days. However, the virus that causes the infection moves to the nerve cells where it enters a resting state. Recurrences vary among individuals but usually occur close to the area of the first episode and are preceded by a tingling, burning, or itching sensation. Most people get type I infections from family members and close friends during childhood. Genital herpes is transmitted sexually.

To avoid transmitting the herpes viruses, it is necessary to avoid contact with active lesions or areas in which tingling, burning, or itching occurs in a previously infected area. The herpes virus can be transmitted not only to others but also to uninfected body parts. For those with genital herpes, condoms may help reduce the risk of transmission, but do not fully protect, as the virus may be on non-covered areas. 

Herpes virus outbreaks are generally annoying, but pose little threat to overall health. However, infections can be very dangerous if they involve the eye or if they occur in pregnant women, AIDS patients, people with cancer, organ transplant recipients and those with major illnesses. Swabs and blood tests may be done to confirm the diagnosis of herpes in certain cases. Antiviral therapy can be given as needed to treat outbreaks as they occur or as a daily dose for suppression.


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To learn more about herpes simplex treatment options, contact Spring Street Dermatology in SOHO, Tribeca, and Uptown, NYC to schedule a consultation. You can also schedule an appointment online here.

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75 Spring Street, Floor 2
New York, NY 10012
Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
Saturdays: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

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4 West 58th Street, 13th Floor
New York, NY 10019

Monday - Friday: 8am6pm

Same-Day Appointments Now Available

Title Address Description
75 Spring Street, Floor 2 New York, NY 10012

75 Spring Street, Floor 2
New York, NY 10012

Monday – Friday: 9am – 8pm

4 West 58th street, 13th Floor New York, NY 10019

4 West 58th street, 13th Floor

New York, NY 10019

Sun & Sat: 10am-3pm

Mon-Fri: 8am-6pm

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