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Cold Sores (Herpes Simplex Type 1)
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Cold Sores (Herpes Simplex Type 1) Overview

Written by FoundHealth, ColleenO.

Cold sores (fever blisters) are small, painful, fluid-filled blisters that occur on the lips, mouth, nose, chin, cheeks, and throat. They are most commonly caused by the herpes simplex type 1 virus (HSV-1). Less often, however, they can be caused by herpes simplex type 2 (HSV-2), the virus that most often causes genital herpes . Having a herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection around the mouth is very common. Nine out of ten older adults have been exposed to HSV, but not everyone who is exposed will develop cold sores.

Herpes Simplex on the Lips
Herpes Simplex on the Lips
© 2009 Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

The virus can be spread by:

  • Contact with the fluid from a cold sore of another person through kissing and other close contact
  • Contact with the eating utensils, razors, towels, or other personal items of a person with active cold sores
  • Sharing food or drink with a person with active cold sores
  • Contact with saliva containing HSV

When HSV gets on the skin around the mouth, it invades nerves in the area. It then remains there, without causing symptoms, usually for 2-20 days, before the first (primary) outbreak occurs. This outbreak can cause blistering across the lips, tongue, and inside of the mouth. It may be accompanied by a body-wide, flu-like illness, consisting of fever, general aches and pains, and swollen lymph glands.

Once this outbreak is over, after about 7-10 days, the virus goes back into the nerves where it remains dormant until it is reactivated, causing another (secondary) outbreak. When this occurs, painful, blistering sores erupt, usually at the border of the colored part of the lip, and can last for up to 14 days. It is impossible to predict when these outbreaks may recur, but typically stress or illness may bring them on, as well as sunlight, immune suppressants, or a woman's menstrual period. Some people have outbreaks regularly, while some never have another.

What are the risk factors for cold sores?

What are the symptoms of cold sores?

How are cold sores diagnosed?

What are the treatments for cold sores?

Are there screening tests for cold sores?

How can I reduce my risk of cold sores?

What questions should I ask my doctor?

Where can I get more information about cold sores?

References

References:

Beers MH, Fletcher AJ, et al. Merck Manual of Medical Information. 2nd ed. Whitehouse Station, NJ: Merck Research Laboratories; 2003.

Cold sore. Mayo Clinic website. Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cold-sore/DS00358 . Updated July 2008. Accessed September 24, 2008.

Herpes simplex. American Academy of Dermatology website. Available at: http://www.aad.org/default.htm . Accessed September 24, 2008.

Miller C. Oral herpes/cold sores essential facts. Australian Herpes Management Forum website. Available at: http://www.ahmf.com.au/oralherpes/essentialfacts.htm . Updated June 2007. Accessed September 24, 2008.

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2 Comments

Posted a month ago

Herbal medicine is the best solution to all manners of infections/disease, i have come to believed this cause i have made use of it,i was diagnosed of herpes tried several big pharma medicine and all form of healing to get rid of it all to no avail, HPV It's the most common sexually transmitted infection/diseases, i was so devastated when i first get tested positive and I was able to get rid of it with the use of herbal medicine and today am tested negative, herpes free and ever since then i now play safe with whomever i came in contact with. i want you all out there to know that having herpes is not the end of your life cause it can be cured by the use of herbal medicine and i got this medicine from Dr Ofua Ofure you can check him out on https://dr-ofua-ofure-herbal-healing-home.business.site whatsapp/call +2347059497969 to get yours today ..

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Posted a month ago

My name is Olisa Blessing, I live so happily. I never assume I will be this happy again in life. I have served as an air hostess ( cabin crew ) for 3years but early this year, I lost my job because of this deadly disease called Herpes virus (HSV). I never felt sick or notice any symptoms. Not until the day all workers were asked to bring their doctors report card, that was how I got tested and I found out that I'm HSV positive and that made me lose my job because it was considered as an STD and is an incurable disease. I became so depressed that I started thinking of suicide. I explained my situation to an older friend of mine, who often said to me 'a problem shared is a problem half solved. She felt so pity for me that she referred me to Dr. Utu Herbal Cure, that was how I contacted Dr. Utu and got the medication from him and was cured for real. I went back to my work a month later with another HSV negative test result and they carried out another test to be very sure and they found out I am negative. Finally, the initial test was replaced with a negative result and my position was restored to me with an apology letter and a salary increment. Beware of impersonators, Dr. Utu can only be reached at: drutuherbalcure@gmail.com

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