Recurrent Herpes

Dear Dr. Rob:

I have had HSV 1 since I was a child. When I was younger, I had frequent and quite severe outbreaks, however, over the past few years as an adult, I have been having 1 outbreak every 18 months to 2 years. About 8 months ago I contracted HSV 2 in the genital area and possibly orally as I also had oral sex with this person. So I now have HSV 1 and 2. I have only experienced prodromal systems in the groin area with no notable blisters, but I know I have both types as I tested positive for both types of antibodies. The prodromal symptoms lasted 3-4 months on and off in the groin area and I have only had these symptoms again once recently in line with constant oral outbreaks. I did experience blisters on my gums after the oral sex.
Four months ago I developed Seborrheic Dermatitis in the groin area which has shown no sign of going away despite trying everything, but have been told that that has nothing to do with herpes my by GP. Over the past 3-4 months I have also been having constant outbreaks in and around my mouth sometimes with notable blisters other times I just experience prodromal symptoms despite being on Valtrex. I am wondering if these constant outbreaks may be due to the fact that I might have HSV 1 and 2 orally. I never remember having such constant outbreaks as a child. It has gotten to the point that I am too scared to get in a relationship because I can’t even kiss anyone (even my 2 year old) due to the constant outbreaks. I am hoping that you are able to shed some light on why I might be experiencing the constant outbreaks and let me know if there is anything I can do to reduce there frequency. Thank you for taking the time to answer my question.
Please Help,
Scared and desperate

Dr. Rob’s Response:

Dear Scared And Desperate:

If you are now going from infrequent outbreaks to continuous outbreaks, there is something additionally going on.  The presence of Seborrheic Dermatitis suggests again that there may be an immunologic problem that has been gone on undiagnosed.  This may predisposing you to the constant outbreaks of herpes.  Rather than just assume that this is recurrent herpes, and because you have 1 or 2 recurring all the time, which by the way, is uncommon,  I would suggest a full work up to determine what is going on immunologically to lead to this sudden increase in the severity of your illness.


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