Skip to content

Genital Herpes Health Center

Font Size

Other Health Problems Caused by Herpes Simplex Virus - Topic Overview

If the herpes simplex virus (HSV) invades a part of the body other than the genital area, it may cause disease in that part of the body. In general, complications are rare. And they usually occur with the first-time (primary) genital herpes outbreak. Some of these complications include:

Other areas of the body that can be infected with the herpes virus include:

Recommended Related to Genital Herpes

How to Tell Your Partner You Have Genital Herpes

You must tell your partner you have genital herpes. If you pick the right time and say it the right way, there's a good chance things will work out OK. Think about how you want your partner to take the news. Do you want it to seem like a huge problem? Of course not, so don't present it that way. If you say, "I have some awful news for you," your partner will likely take it as awful news. Instead, be casual, direct, and unemotional. Also avoid suggesting how he or she should react, especially in...

Read the How to Tell Your Partner You Have Genital Herpes article > >

  • The lips (herpes labialis). These outbreaks are often called cold sores or fever blisters. They are usually mild but may be treated with antiviral medicines if they become severe or more frequent.
  • The hands and fingers (herpetic whitlow). Plastic or rubber gloves prevent its spread.
  • The anus (herpes proctitis). Herpes proctitis is often more severe than other types of genital herpes.
  • The eyes (herpes keratitis). Herpes can be transmitted from the mouth or genitals to the eyes. This can cause blindness if it is not treated early. If your eye is very irritated or if you feel pain in your eye, see your doctor as soon as possible.
  • The liver, lungs, and joints. This occurs mostly in people who have impaired immune systems.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 14, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    Next Article:

    Other Health Problems Caused by Herpes Simplex Virus Topics

    Today on WebMD

    STD Overview
    BHC Healthy Sex Life
    things your guy wish you knew slideshow
    Sex Drive Killers 03
    Genital Herpes Risks Quiz
    Young couple holding hands
    Hepatitis Prevent 10
    Herpes Vaccine Study

    If you have genital herpes, do you know the person who passed it to you?

    Daughter Development Evaluator
    HPV Vaccine Future
    STD Facts Quiz
    mother and daughter talking

    WebMD Special Sections