Genital Herpes


Sores typically occur on the penis, vagina, buttocks, or anus. Women can have sores inside the vagina. Like oral herpes, these sores can appear anywhere on the skin.

Tests to diagnose: 

The tests include:

  • Blood test
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction Test
  • Viral Culture

Treatment for genital herpes will depend on whether you have the infection for the first time (a primary infection) or your symptoms keep coming back (a recurrent outbreak).

Primary infection

If you have genital herpes for the first time, see your GP or visit your local GUM clinic (also called sexual health clinics). They may prescribe antiviral tablets, such as aciclovir, which you will need to take five times a day.

Aciclovir works by preventing HSV from multiplying. However, it does not clear the virus from your body completely and does not have any effect once you stop taking it.

You will need to take a course of aciclovir for at least five days, or longer if you still have new blisters and open sores forming on your genital area when your treatment begins.

Aciclovir can cause some side effects, including being sick and headaches.

Other antiviral medications that may be used to treat genital herpes include famciclovir and valaciclovir.