You Might Not Have Herpes - Commonly Confused Genital Infections
Herpes simplex is an extremely frustrating disease to diagnose and treat because it's so elusive and enigmatic. Not only can the herpes virus burrow into nerve roots, effectively hiding safely out of reach of antiviral medication until it releases itself during a later cycle, it can also present with symptoms that look and feel exactly like the symptoms of a number of different genital diseases. This can be good news for people who are afraid they might be infected by herpes simplex but don't yet have any conclusive test results. New and effective herpes simplex blood tests can in fact identify with 98% accuracy whether or not your difficulties are related to a genital herpes infection or some other disorder. However, until you achieve conclusive herpes test results, you may be interested to learn about these other common conditions that can present similar or seemingly identical symptoms as herpes simplex infections.
This fungal dermatophyte is a particularly common and easily catchable micro-organism that can cause symptoms that look and feel very similar to those of genital herpes. Dermatophytes are tiny creatures that live in our skin and make the creases and folds, especially between our joints, their homes. They like the moisture and sweat that our skin gives off. Trichophyton rubrum is also known as ringworm, and can cause a number of different disorders such as athlete's foot and, more interestingly to those unsure as to whether or not they have genital herpes, common run of the mill jock itch. Jock itch is in fact a mild to moderate ringworm infection of the genital region, especially the skin around the inner thighs and underneath the genitals. Just like genital herpes, this ringworm infection can present with itchy or painful red patches that seem to spring up out of nowhere. The good news about jock itch is that, unlike genital herpes, it can be easily and quickly cleared up with antifungal cremes or ointments you either obtain over the counter at your local drug store or via prescription from your doctor.
The medical name for jock itch is tinea cruris. Left untreated, it can progress to envelop larger and larger patches of your skin. To prevent or lessen the symptoms of jock itch, as well as to help you determine on your own whether or not you have genital herpes or common jock itch, wash the affected area thoroughly in the shower with warm water and soap, then pat dry and try not to wear clothing or tight fitting underwear for as long as you can. If you are going to sleep soon, don't wear underwear to bed. Keeping the affected surfaces cleaned very well with soap and exposed to open fresh air will help to prevent the growth of further fungal colonies. On the other hand, genital herpes won't similarly respond to warm water, soap and open air because it is a viral infection that comes in waves and completes its own cycles of dormancy, manifestation, eruption and remission, more or less on its own schedule and as affected by your body's immune system.