The first herpesvirus infection

What is herpes simplex?

Herpes simplex virus (HSV) is an infection caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV), which is very common, affecting about 90% of the adult population.

Generally, the first contact with the virus usually occurs at the age of 1-3 years. It usually presents asymptomatically, however, it can sometimes manifest itself in the form of herpetic gingivostomatitis. This process is characterized by odynophagia (severe sore throat), gingivitis and aphthous ulcers, as well as cervical lymphadenopathy and fever.

How does the infection progress?

Once the first infection has occurred, the virus is stored in the trigeminal nerve ganglion. It may then be stored for years to reactivate in the form of a rash at some point.

It is believed that the causes of this reactivation would be:

  • Stress
  • Sunlight
  • Fever
  • Trauma
  • A state of immunodeficiency
  • An infection

What are its symptoms?

It usually presents with a sensation of itching, stinging and numbness of the lip. Over the next few days, you will experience the appearance of small, painful blisters that dry up and crust over.

How to treat cold sores?

It is customary to use antiviral creams several times a day, but to be effective they must be applied as soon as symptoms first appear.