According to Health Grove a health site that uses Graphic’s semantic technology to deliver deep insights through research, in the East African region Uganda ranks high with the rates of herpes standing at 17 percent. Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the herpes simplex virus.
Herpes simplex virus is categorized into two types, that is Herpes simplex Virus type one and Herpes simplex virus type two.
According to Marrylane an expert in Sexually transmitted infections in the department of Public Health in Uganda Christian University, Type one is transmitted by oral to oral contact which results into oral herpes in the mouth, it can also be transmitted to the genital areas through oral genital contact which results into genital herpes.
Type two is sexually transmitted and it causes infection in the anal area, painful blisters, ulcers and it is not curable .
According to world Health organization, 3.5 billion people under the age of 50 have type one herpes, while it is estimated that 417 million people aged 15-49 world wide have type two herpes.
signs and symptoms of type one.
Its unfortunate that most people with the infection do not know that they have it, symptoms include, orals herpes, painful or open sores around the mouth , sores on the lips. And also Infected people may face tingling, itching or burning around their mouth
Recurrent symptoms may be come uncomfortable and leads to some social stigma and psychological torture to the patient.
Antivirals medications like acyclovir, famciclovir and Valacyclovir are the most effective medications as they help reduce the severity and frequency but it should be noted that these do not cure the disease.
People with active symptoms of oral herpes should avoid oral contact with others and sharing objects that have contact with saliva. They should also abstain from oral sex, to avoid transmitting herpes to the genitals of a sexual partner.
The consistent and correct use of condoms can help to prevent the spread of genital herpes. However, condoms can only reduce the risk of infection, as outbreaks of genital herpes can occur in areas not covered by a condom
Genital herpes caused by HSV-2 is a global issue, According to WHO , an estimated 417 million people worldwide were living with the infection in 2012 . Prevalence of HSV-2 infection was estimated to be highest in Africa standing at 31.5 percent.
People infected with HSV-2 may experience sensations of mild tingling or shooting pain in the legs, hips, and buttocks before the occurrence of genital ulcers.
Genital herpes infections often have no symptoms, sometimes only presenting itself with mild symptoms that go unrecognized.
Marrylane adds that most infected people are unaware that they have the infection, which she says is a danger because it keeps people in the dark as the severity of the disease escalates.
HSV-2 and HIV have been shown to influence each other.
And also HSV-2 infection increases the risk of acquiring a new HIV infection by approximately three times if Safety sexual mannerism is not exercised. In addition, people with both HIV and HSV-2 infection are more likely to spread HIV to others.
Infection with HSV-2 in people living with HIV has a more severe presentation and more frequent recurrences. In advanced HIV disease stages, HSV-2 can lead to more serious complications
The consistent and correct use of condoms can help reduce the risk of spreading genital herpes. However, condoms only provide partial protection, as HSV can be found in areas not covered by a condom like the skin and fluid contact.
Medical male circumcision can provide men life-long partial protection against HSV-2.
Also pregnant women with symptoms of genital herpes should seek medical attention to help prevent the virus from affecting the unborn baby, because it may put the baby at the risk of getting the Virus.
It is also common that More women are infected with HSV-2 than men; in 2012 WHO report, it was estimated that 267 million women and 150 million men were living with the infection.
This is because sexual transmission of HSV is more efficient from men to women than from women to men.