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Hsv1 vs hsv 2


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Ok pretty sure I have hsv1 oral and gen (getting blood drawn tomorrow to ease my mind).. partner's blood tested positive for hsv1. I just left my doc appt and she said there's no difference between the 2 and docs are starting to drop the 1 and 2 and just call it hsv. Is this true? After reading on here and on internet it sounds like there is a difference.

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Here are someone differences I'm aware of:


1) Location and type dictate shedding and recurrence rates, though individual outcomes vary. On average, genital HSV2 sheds and recurs most frequently. Oral HSV1 sheds roughly half as frequently as genital HSV2. Genital HSV1 sheds about a third as frequently as genital HSV2. Oral HSV2 rarely sheds and almost never recurs. Of course, there are people with genital HSV1 who get frequent recurrences and people with genital HSV2 who do not, but I'm talking averages.


2) HSV2 strongly prefers the genital region. HSV1 is more likely to be transmitted to a variety of places including mouth and genitals.


3) HSV2 largely protects against future HSV1 infection. The reverse is not true.


4) HSV1 is often acquired in childhood, usually through non-sexual means. Those who reach sexual maturity without contracting oral HSV1 are at greater risk of contracting it through sexual means. HSV2 is usually acquired in young adulthood and adulthood through sexual contact.


It could be that your doctor sees them as the same because they really aren't that much different and are treated with the same medication (if/when medication is required). She may also be reacting the stigma, though I don't think dropping the types is too helpful in that regard because the stigma seems (IMHO) to be based on location, not type. Those who are ignorant about herpes and think HSV1 is always oral and HSV2 is always genital may attach greater stigma to HSV2, but in general I think there is greater societal acceptance of oral herpes ("cold sores") and fear of genital herpes, regardless of type. JMO.



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