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More herpes outbreaks since menopause

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Hi, I' a 23 yr veteran and 56 yrs old.  Im fully menopausal and on bioide tical hormone  therapy.  Since  I started on the progesterone I've been getting monthly OB.  Wondering if anyone else has experienced this, if there is research on this or if anyone has insights about HRT or just my immune system going down? I'm going to start again on regular  L-Lysine.( I had stopped for the last 6 months). Thanks



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@Gibouep hey! 

I am not in menopause, but I am pregnant and I can tell you that I am having a lot more OB's now probably due to hormonal and immunity changes which are usual in pregnancy. I too was taking progesterone because I have high risk pregnancy but I only took it for three months.

I talked to a lot of women who had worsening of their HSV infection during menopause which again is probably caused by hormonal shift. Also, after you turn 50 it is not unusual for immune system to become weaker so it us important to take care of your health and take some immune support supplements in order to help your immune system to work better. I remember one woman who was also in menopause and had dramatic increase of outbreaks and nerve pain but everything subsided after year and a half. 

Can you take antivirals for supression for some time and see wil it reduce number of your outbreaks? 

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I have gone back on antivirals but it reeks havoc on my IBS. After a while I will just use L-Lysine instead and hope.that this will be enough.  I will also go start taking probiotics to help with my IBS and gut health as I know our  immunity  is all from our gut. I am seeing my doc next week.

I'll keep you posted it this resolve my issue.  I just hope that it does.  After 23 yr, I would have expected that I would ve getting less OB not more.


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Yeah, unfortunately women usually have much more trouble with HSV than men do. I think it's a myth that usually with time things get better with HSV. Yes, it gets better for some but for some people it gets worse. IBS probably has part in worsening of your condition. It is good you are trying to put it under control.

Is lysine helping you? Did you try glutamine or native propolis maybe? Also, can you try vaginal probiotics? I ask because some women who had worsening of their hsv infection during menopause told me that vaginal probiotics were really helpful.

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Yes lysine has helped in the past (2 caplets per day-). Ive used lysine instead of the antivirals for daily maintenance.

Id like to read where you found the info about women having more trouble than men with HSV OBs.? And any other article. Please.

I haven't done any research in a few yrs now but certainly will to see if there are anything new.


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I wiI try to find that article and send you a link but maybe @Flowerteacher55has something in her archive. 😃 

I remember reading about how woman usually have much more trouble with HSV (more outbreaks etc) probably due to hormonal changes (menstruation, pregnancy, menopause). As soon as I find article, I will send it to you. No worry! 

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Hi @Gibouep!

I hope you are well. 

Due to hormones and the anatomy of the vaginal genitalia, HSV tends to be more intense for those with vaginas. 

Because menstruation occurs monthly and the hormonal cycles are constantly changing, hormones can be a major trigger for many people with vaginal genital herpes.  Also, stress can trigger outbreaks, and often times the hormonal changes that occur with menstruation or menopause give us stress, anger, or overall depression, which could trigger outbreaks as well.

Read more about herpes and periods here! https://www.teenvogue.com/story/why-you-get-herpes-during-period#:~:text=Hilda Hutcherson%2C MD%2C assistant professor,to hormonal changes%2C she explains.

I take birth control pills to regulate my emotions (I have PMDD) and I was thinking perhaps those with heavy periods or those who have outbreaks around their period would experience less outbreaks if they took birth control to regulate hormones. I am not a doctor, but perhaps consulting an OBGYN about it could give some answers for those who are interested! 🙂 However, the two articles I linked at the end of the end of this post actually contradict this! So, again, consulting an OBGYN would be best! ❤️ 

The anatomy of the vagina is what makes the outbreaks often much more painful, as the vaginal genitalia have much more surface area of exposed mucous membranes than penises. This is also why those with vaginas are much more likely to contract HSV. Sometimes outbreaks occur inside the vaginal canal, which is painful as well. 

Another odd concept that researchers have observed is that female sex hormones actually make us more susceptible to contracting herpes. Basically, researchers injected mice with the hormone Progesterone (pregnancy hormone) or the hormone Estradiol (primary form of Estrogen that maintains reproductive system during reproductive years). The article states: "The estradiol-treated mice were protected 100 percent, whereas the progesterone-treated mice and mice that didn’t receive any hormones, showed extensive infection, and additionally, the progesterone-treated mice had increased inflammation and were more susceptible to the virus. The mice treated with a combination of the two hormones, estradiol and progesterone, were protected, but only if the virus doses were weakened." Here are two articles that discuss this idea! https://www.news-medical.net/news/2005/02/21/7857.aspx and https://iovs.arvojournals.org/article.aspx?articleid=2378239 (this one is VERY science jargon-y, so just read the conclusion at the top as a good summary!)

I hope these help!!! 

Blessings to you and @Bloomer!! 🙂❤️ 




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