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What herbs, supplements, and more can help manage genital herpes?

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The evidence is mixed on whether herbal extracts and nutritional supplements help with symptoms of genital herpes.

Many people say that an extract of the echinacea plant can make your herpes outbreak happen less often or make it less severe. But one six-month study found no meaningful difference between the effects of Echinacea and dummy medicine.                          

Another study showed that an ointment containing propolis, a waxy substance that honeybees make, may help herpes sores heal faster. Researchers have also found that the herb Prunella vulgaris, and an edible mushroom, Rozites caperata (the "gypsy mushroom"), have chemicals that fight herpes viruses.

SOURCES:  Terri Warren, RN, and Ricks Warren, PhD, The Updated Herpes Handbook, Portland Press, 2002. Vonau, B. "Does the extract of the plant Echinacea purpurea influence the clinical course of recurrent genital herpes?" International Journal of STD and AIDS, March 2001. Vynograd, N. "A comparative multi-centre study of the efficacy of propolis, acyclovir and placebo in the treatment of genital herpes (HSV)," Phytomedicine, March 2000. Chiu, LC. "A polysaccharide fraction from medicinal herb Prunella vulgaris downregulates the expression of herpes simplex virus antigen in Vero cells." Journal of Ethnopharmacology, July 2004. Xu, HX. "Isolation and characterization of an anti-HSV polysaccharide from Prunella vulgaris," Antiviral Research, ov. 1999. Piraino,F. "Isolation and partial characterization of an antiviral, RC-183, from the edible mushroom Rozites caperata, Antiviral Research, Sept. 1999.

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on September 07, 2016

SOURCES:  Terri Warren, RN, and Ricks Warren, PhD, The Updated Herpes Handbook, Portland Press, 2002. Vonau, B. "Does the extract of the plant Echinacea purpurea influence the clinical course of recurrent genital herpes?" International Journal of STD and AIDS, March 2001. Vynograd, N. "A comparative multi-centre study of the efficacy of propolis, acyclovir and placebo in the treatment of genital herpes (HSV)," Phytomedicine, March 2000. Chiu, LC. "A polysaccharide fraction from medicinal herb Prunella vulgaris downregulates the expression of herpes simplex virus antigen in Vero cells." Journal of Ethnopharmacology, July 2004. Xu, HX. "Isolation and characterization of an anti-HSV polysaccharide from Prunella vulgaris," Antiviral Research, ov. 1999. Piraino,F. "Isolation and partial characterization of an antiviral, RC-183, from the edible mushroom Rozites caperata, Antiviral Research, Sept. 1999.

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on September 07, 2016

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When should you tell someone you're dating that you have genital herpes?

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