A risk factor is something that increases your likelihood of getting a disease or condition.
It is possible to develop
with or without the risk factors listed below. However, the more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of becoming infected with genital herpes. If you have a number of risk factors, ask your healthcare provider what you can do to reduce your risk.
Studies have found that cases of genital herpes have continued to increase. From the 1970s to the 1990s, HSV-2, the virus that causes genital herpes, has increased by 30%.
Anyone who is sexually active (anyone who has any vaginal, oral, or anal contact with others) can get it. If a person has oral herpes and performs oral sex, it is possible to develop genital herpes from that contact.
The following factors can increase your risk of becoming infected with genital herpes:
Having unprotected sex
Becoming sexually active at a young age
Having been sexually active for many years
Having had several sexual partners
Having a partner who is infected with genital herpes
Engaging in male homosexual activity
Women are more likely to be infected with genital herpes.
The majority of new infections occur in adolescents and young adults.
In young adults, herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) infection is becoming a more common cause of genital herpes.
and other conditions that affect the immune system
History of other sexually transmitted infections
Ashley RL, Wald A. Genital herpes: review of the epidemic and potential use of type-specific serology.
Clinical Microbiology Reviews
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Seroprevalence of herpes simplex virus type 2 among persons aged 14-49
years—United States, 2005-2008.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep.
Chida Y, Mao X. Does psychosocial stress predict symptomatic herpes simplex virus recurrence? A
meta-analytic investigation on prospective studies.
Brain Behav Immun.
Corey L. The current trend in genital herpes. Progress in prevention.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases.
Fleming DT, McQuillian GM, Johnson RE, et al. Herpes simplex virus type 2 in the United States, 1976 to 1994.
N Engl J Med.
Mertz GJ. Epidemiology of genital herpes infections.
Infect Dis Clin North Am.
Leone P, Abudalu M, Mitha E, Gani M, Zhou W, Hamed K.
One-day famciclovir vs. placebo in patient-initiated episodic treatment of
recurrent genital herpes in immunocompetent Black patients.
Curr Med Res Opin.
Roberts C. Genital herpes in young adults: changing sexual behaviours, epidemiology and management.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a