Going Forward The Outlook And Prognosis Of Genital Herpes

Receiving a genital herpes diagnosis is not the end of the world, or even the end of your life. This is a common disease that affects one in every six American adults. The prognosis for genital herpes has remained stable, but science continues to take new strides toward prevention and cure.

What Is the Prognosis for Me?

No cure currently exists for the herpes simplex virus. Treatments are available to help relieve outbreaks, but most of the time the virus will simply live inside your body with no noticeable side effects. For many people the disease can be little more than a nuisance, but it’s one that they might carry with them for the rest of their life.
Because outbreaks caused by genital herpes usually lessen in severity over time, many people do not require any medical treatment at all for their condition.
Others may experience occasional outbreaks, and use an intermittent antiviral treatment. This means they begin an oral antiviral pill regiment until symptoms have subsided or the outbreak disappears.
Still other people may experience frequent, painful outbreaks. For this, a doctor will often prescribe suppressive antiviral therapy that can reduce the frequency and effects of outbreaks, or in some individuals, may prevent outbreaks entirely. This is a daily treatment that involves taking a single pill per day.

What Is the Prognosis for My Partner?

If you are infected, the genital herpes prognosis for your partner will vary according to the steps you take to prevent it. Although the risk will never be zero, the steps you can take to reduce the chance of spreading the disease to your partner include:
• Being completely honest about your condition
• Not having sex during outbreaks
• Wearing a condom, even between outbreaks.
You’re most contagious when outbreaks are present, so be mindful of this before engaging in sexual activity. If you feel a burning or itching sensation in the areas where outbreaks normally occur, this could be a sign of onset and sexual activity should be avoided.
Even when outbreaks are not present, you can still pass on the disease. Many people never even experience outbreaks and are unaware that they have the disease- -but this doesn’t prevent them from passing it on to others.

Coping with Genital Herpes: Other Factors to Consider

Genital herpes may raise complications during pregnancy which you should fully discuss with your doctor. This includes the risk of passing the virus on to your child, which could result in infant fatality. Having a cesarean-section delivery should eliminate this possibility.
The genital herpes prognosis for those who are infected with HIV is more severe. Genital herpes can complicate the HIV virus and impact your overall health and immunity. People with genital herpes are also more at risk for contracting HIV. A study of the epidemiology of genital herpes reveals that this is especially true for black women and homosexual men.