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Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease: Signs and Symptoms

Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease: Signs and Symptoms

Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease: Signs and Symptoms | Tampa | HillsboroughBabies and children less than five years of age are most susceptible to catching hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD). 

This disease occurs commonly in this age bracket as it takes time for the human body to develop immunity to the virus that causes HFMD. While older children and adults can contract HFMD, it is less common. 

Outbreaks (when many individuals in one area suddenly develop the condition) of HFMD happen around the globe. Such outbreaks may be more common in Asia. There were almost two million cases of HFMD in China in the year 2015. 

The largest outbreak happened in Taiwan in 1998, and over 12o,000 people were afflicted at this time. In the US, outbreaks are rare.

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding communities.

 

Symptoms of HFMD

Most signs and symptoms clear within 7 to 10 days when a child catches HFMD. The following may occur during this time:

Days 1–2

For the initial one to two days, the child may feel unwell and display one of the following symptoms:

  • A sore throat
  • A mild fever
  • Stomach pain
  • Loss of appetite

 

Days 3–7 (or longer)

The above symptoms tend to clear in one or two days, and the following may occur:

  • An itchy rash, often on the feet, hands, or both
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • Mouth sores

Mouth sores

A majority of children have a few painful mouth sores, which often occur on the tongue. Sores can also develop in other areas of the mouth, including the roof of the mouth. Sores tend to start developing as bright pink spots or tiny bumps and subsequently turn into blisters, which can be painful.

Itchy rash

An itchy rash tends to occur on the feet or hands. But it can also develop in other areas of the body, such as the elbows or knees.

A child can develop all the signs and symptoms of this disease, but most children only have a few. 

 

Signs and Symptoms in Adults

A majority of adults who contract HFMD do not develop any signs or symptoms. If they do, the signs and symptoms are the same as those that occur in children. 

The signs and symptoms clear rapidly. Most signs and symptoms clear within 7 to 10 days. Children below the age of two years may remain sick for longer as it may take their bodies more time to eliminate the virus. 

 

What causes HFMD?

HFMD is a contagious disease which spreads when a person who has HFMD passes a virus that leads to the disease to another person. There are various viruses that can cause this disease.

In order to catch a virus that causes HFMD, a person typically needs to be in close proximity to the infected individual. A person can get this virus when they:

  • Swallow (or breathe in) droplets of infected mucus, salvia, or feces
  • Touch fluid from a blister caused by HFMD
  • Handle a contaminated article, such as a doorknob

A person can also get HFMD when they swallow water from a swimming pool with particles of infected feces. 

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete / Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease

Hand-Foot-and-Mouth Disease | Tampa | Hillsborough | St. PeteHand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD) is a contagious condition that occurs due to a virus. Multiple viruses can cause this disease, but the signs are typically the same:

  • Mouth sores
  • An itchy rash on the hands, feet, or both

A person can get HFMD by being in close contact with an individual who has it. They can also catch it when they touch something, such as a doorknob or toy, contaminated with a virus that causes the disease.

Many people are worried that they can catch HFMD from a pet or another animal. However, this is not possible as animals cannot get HFMD. 

Certain animals get a different disease known as foot-and-mouth disease (also called hoof-and-mouth disease). The foot-and-mouth disease only occurs in animals that have hooves, such as pigs, sheep, and cows. It is not possible for people to contract it. 

HFMD tends to be mild in the US. It typically:

  • Occurs in children below the age of five years
  • Resolves on its own in 7 to 10 days without leaving any trace

After HFMD clears, the individual who had it develops immunity to the virus that leads to the disease. As various viruses can cause HFMD, certain people get it again from a different virus.

In the US, a majority of individuals catch HFMD during the spring, summer, or fall, which is when the viruses that cause it are most likely to proliferate. This disease tends to occur in the tropics all year round. 

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding locations.

 

How long is a person with HFMD contagious?

Individuals who get HFMD tend to be most contagious during the initial week that they have the virus. 

In order to prevent the spread of the virus to others, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends keeping a child with HFMD home until the:

  • Sores heal
  • Fever stops

The CDC recommends this as children usually have close contact with each other. This can spread the virus.

 

Recommendations for Preventing the Spread of HFMD

There is presently no vaccine available for hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD), which can potentially lower a person’s risk of getting it. 

A majority of people catch the infection when someone in their home has HFMD. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), when someone in a household has HFMD or a person travels to a region of the world where HFMD outbreaks are common, such as parts of Asia:

A person should wash their hands with soap and water often. Washing the hands is particularly important in the following circumstances:

  • After changing diapers or potty training
  • After using the toilet
  • Prior to eating
  • Prior to preparing food

It is also important to avoid close contact with anyone who has HFMD. This disease usually spreads when an infected individual sneezes or coughs. Until it is certain that the infected person cannot spread the virus to others, it is advisable not to get too close, if possible.

While a majority of people are not contagious after 7 to 10 days, it can take longer.  As the virus can spread with close contact, it also helps to avoid hugging, kissing, and sharing food with the infected individual.

Disinfecting counters, doorknobs, and other surfaces that people often touch is also a good idea. The virus that leads to HFMD can spread from one individual to another upon touching an infected surface. 

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Genital Warts: Tips For Managing

Genital Warts: Tips For Managing | Tampa | Hillsborough | St. PeteAnyone can be affected by genital warts due to a variety of reasons. The key is to identify the problem early and take appropriate medical steps to address the condition. 

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding communities. 

 

How to Manage Genital Warts

The following approaches can help reduce a person’s risk of contracting HPV and genital warts:

Get an HPV vaccine

In case a person is aged between 9 and 26 years, they may be eligible for an HPV vaccine. There are two HPV vaccines.

One of these vaccines is “quadrivalent,” which means that it offers protection against four types of HPV. This vaccine is for males and females between the ages of 9 and 26 years. 

It can prevent the types of HPV that cause a majority of genital warts. A person will need to get three shots to be fully vaccinated. A person should get all three shots prior to their first sexual encounter for the vaccine to be most effective. 

Both HPV vaccines offer protection to women from most forms of cervical cancer. 

Use a condom during sex 

A latex condom may decrease the risk of contracting genital warts. Condoms do not cover all skin in the genital region. For this reason, they do not always prevent an infected person from spreading HPV. 

Limit the number of sex partners 

Engaging in sex with multiple partners increases a person’s risk of getting HPV. This risk is lower when a person is in a faithful relationship with one person. The only sure way to prevent HPV is to remain celibate, which means never to have oral, anal, or vaginal sex. 

Stop smoking

Research indicates that smokers are at a higher risk of developing genital warts in comparison to non-smokers. 

Coping with genital warts

A dermatologist may recommend the following to people:

Do not use medicine meant for the treatment of other types of warts. Other medications are good for the treatment of common warts and foot warts, but not genital warts. A patient should consult a dermatologist for the treatment of genital warts.

People with genital warts should inform their sex partners and consult a doctor. 

Use a condom during sex

It is important to use a condom during sex. A latex condom may be helpful in reducing the risk of spreading genital warts. Condoms do not cover all the skin in the genital region, meaning that condoms do not always prevent an infected individual from spreading HPV. 

 

Women

Get Pap tests (smears). Women who have undergone treatment for genital warts should receive Pap tests (smears) as recommended by their doctors. Pap tests are the ideal way to detect early abnormal changes in the cervix, and this can prevent death from cervical cancer. In case a woman has an abnormal Pap test, she should follow up with their doctor.

It can be life-changing to get genital warts, and the patient may find it reassuring to talk to others and join support groups.

Why are Pap smears and biopsies performed?

The Pap smear checks for changes in the cervix that could occur due to an HPV infection. It can also check for cervical cancer. Cancer in the cervix can be cured with early treatment. 

There is a close relationship between HPV infection and cervical cancer. Therefore, women with HPV must be monitored cautiously for cancer. 

The types of HPV that lead to genital warts tend to be different from the ones that cause cancer. But as patients can be infected with more than one type of HPV infection, it is vital to stay on track with cervical cancer screening recommendations and appointments as directed by the doctor. 

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Genital Warts: Who Gets Them and Causes

Genital Warts: Who Gets and Causes | Tampa | Hillsborough | St. PeteIt is possible for anyone who has sex to become infected by human papillomavirus (HPV), the virus that causes genital warts. Almost 50 percent of people who have sex have had an HPV infection, and it occurs most commonly before the age of 30. 

But not everyone who gets an HPV infection develops genital warts. A majority of people never develop these warts as the body’s immune system fights the virus. A majority of people get rid of the virus in a few years and are not contagious any longer.

Individuals with a weakened immune system may be unable to fight the virus. Genital warts grow when the body cannot fight HPV. An individual’s immune system may become weak from conditions such as AIDS or cancer. Certain medications, such as those to prevent organ rejection, also cause a weakened immune system. 

Research indicates that smokers experience a higher risk of developing genital warts in comparison to non-smokers, but it is not clear why.

At times, a child gets genital warts. In exceptional cases, an infected mother can pass the virus to her infant during childbirth. Warts may not manifest immediately. Genital warts in a child can indicate sexual abuse as well.

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding locations.

 

What causes genital warts?

Genital warts spread from an individual who has HPV to another person in the following ways:

  • Sex (vaginal, anal, or oral)
  • Genital contact (genitals touch)
  • Childbirth (from infected mother to infant)

Genital warts may not appear until weeks or months following sex with an infected individual. 

 

Complications

The complications associated with genital warts may include:

Cancer

There has been shown to be a close link between cervical cancer and genital HPV infection. Specific forms of HPV are also associated with cancer of the anus, cancer of the penis, cancer of the vulva, and cancer of the mouth and throat. 

Human papillomavirus infection does not always cause cancer. However, it is still vital for women to have regular Pap tests, especially if they have been infected with high-risk forms of HPV.  

Problems during Pregnancy

Genital warts may lead to issues during pregnancy. Warts could become large, making it challenging to urinate. Warts on the vaginal wall may impact the ability of the vaginal tissues to stretch during childbirth. Large warts in the vagina or on the vulva can bleed when stretched during childbirth. 

In rare cases, a baby born to a mother with genital herpes may develop warts in their throat. The baby may require surgery to ensure that their airway is clear. 

 

Prevention

The use of a condom each time a person engages in sex can significantly decrease the risk of contracting genital warts. While condoms can reduce the risk, it cannot entirely eliminate it. A person can still become infected with genital warts.

 

Vaccination

A vaccine called Gardasil protects against four strains of HPV that leads to cancer and is used to prevent genital warts. The US Food and Drug Administration approved a vaccine known as Gardasil 9 in 2014, which protects against nine strains of HPV. 

Another vaccine, known as Cervarix, protects against cervical cancer but does not offer protection from genital warts. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends routine vaccination boys and girls aged between 11 and 12 years.

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Genital Warts: Signs And Symptoms

shutterstock 144796990 300x300 - Genital Warts: Signs And SymptomsOne of the most common types of sexually transmitted infections is genital warts. 

Almost all sexually active people will become infected by at least one form of human papillomavirus (HPV), the virus that leads to genital warts, at some time in their lives. It is somewhat more likely for women to develop genital warts in comparison to men. 

Genital warts, as the same suggests, impact the moist tissues of the genital region. These warts may appear as small, flesh-hued bumps or have a cauliflower-like appearance. Genital warts are too small to be noticeable in many cases. 

Similar to warts that appear on other areas of the body, genital warts are also caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). Certain strains of genital HPV can lead to genital warts, while others may cause cancer. Vaccines can offer protection against certain strains of genital HPV. 

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding communities. 

 

Symptoms

Genital warts occur in various shapes and sizes. Certain people get a few warts, while others develop many warts.

The most common symptoms (what is visible) of these warts are as follows:

  • Tiny, scattered bumps that are skin-colored or slightly darker
  • A cluster of bumps that appear similar to cauliflower
  • Growths in the genital region can be elevated or flat and rough or smooth

Genital warts usually do not have symptoms. At times, the warts may burn, itch, hurt, or bleed. 

Genital warts may appear on the following body areas:

 

Females

  • Vulva (external female genitals)
  • Vagina
  • Cervix
  • Groin

 

Males

  • Penis
  • Scrotum
  • Thigh
  • Groin

 

Females and Males

  • In the throat or mouth following oral sex with an infected individual
  • In or around the anus after engaging in anal sex with a person with HPV

Genital warts are a common sexually transmitted infection, and they can manifest on the genitals, in the pubic region, or in the anal canal. 

Women may experience genital warts on the walls of the vagina, the vulva, the region between the external genitals and the anus, the anal canal, and the cervix. 

In males, these warts may develop on the anus, the shaft or tip or the penis, or the scrotum. In addition, genital warts may also occur in the throat or mouth of a person who has oral sexual contact with an infected individual. 

The signs and symptoms associated with genital warts are as follows:

  • Tiny, flesh-hued, or gray swellings in the genital region
  • Multiple warts close together to take on a cauliflower-like appearance
  • Discomfort or itching in the genital region
  • Bleeding with intercourse

Genital warts can be so tiny and flat that they are not visible to the naked eye. However, these warts may multiply into substantial clusters. 

 

Risk Factors

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost all sexually active individuals will become infected with at least one form of HPV at some point in their lives. The factors that heighten the risk of becoming infected include:

  • Engaging in unprotected sex with multiple partners
  • Having another sexually transmitted infection
  • Having sex with a person whose sexual history is unknown
  • Becoming sexually active at a young age

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Genital Warts

Genital Warts | Tampa | Hillsborough | St. Pete | Pinellas CountyGenital warts refer to warts that appear in the genital area. There can be a single wart or a cluster of warts. These warts occur due to catching the human papillomavirus (HPV) from a person who is already affected by the virus. 

HPV is a common sexually transmitted infection, and it is possible to spread or get these wars even when one cannot see them.

There are 100 or so types of HPV. But only a few can cause genital warts. Certain HPV types can lead to cervical cancer. Other types can cause cancer of the penis, anal cancer, or through and mouth cancer. A person can get more than one type of HPV.

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding locations.

 

How do dermatologists diagnose genital warts?

People usually feel embarrassed by growths in the genital region and avoid seeing a doctor. However, an experienced dermatologist can provide peace of mind as the patient can get an accurate diagnosis and treatment. 

A dermatologist can diagnose genital warts by evaluating warts at the time of an office visit. Sometimes the dermatologist will remove a war or a portion of it and send it to a lab, which can confirm whether a patient has genital warts.

 

How do dermatologists treat genital warts?

Some genital warts resolve without treatment. However, removing warts offers the following benefits as treatment:

  • Reduces the risk of spreading the virus
  • Relieves any pain and itching
  • Lets the patient know that the growths are genital warts and not cancer
  • Eliminates warts that can be challenging to keep clean

For the treatment of genital warts, it is ideal to consult a dermatologist. The patient should not use a wart medication that they can purchase without a prescription. These drugs address other types of warts, but genital warts necessitate different treatments.

The treatment may involve a procedure in the dermatologist’s office or a medication that the patient can apply on the warts. Some treatments for genital warts are as follows:

Medications 

The dermatologist often prescribes drugs that the patient will need to use on genital warts at home. These prescription drugs include: 

  • Podofilox for external warts (to prevent the wart cells from growing).
  • Imiquimod (enhances the body’s immune system to enable it to fight HPV).
  • An ointment comprising green tea extract (sinecatechins) for external warts and warts in the anal region.

Procedures

A dermatologist may undertake one of the following procedures during an office visit:

  • Cryosurgery (freeze off the warts using liquid nitrogen).
  • Excision (cut out the warts).
  • Electrocautery (destruct the warts using an electric current).
  • Laser treatment (destruct the warts using laser light).

Other treatments

At times, medicine is injected into the wars. An antiviral drug known as Interferon may be injected into the genital warts. This treatment is typically used if other treatments prove to be ineffective. 

 

Results

Treatment can eliminate the warts that are visible, but it may not remove the virus from the body. The warts can return if the virus remains. A person who still has the virus may spread it through sex. The use of a condom during sex can decrease the risk of spreading the virus. 

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Genital Herpes: What You Should Know About Sex And Pregnancy

Genital Herpes: What You Should Know About Sex And Pregnancy | TampaIndividuals diagnosed with genital herpes usually want to understand if they can have sex and produce healthy children. The answer to these questions is “yes,” but the patient will need to take some precautions. 

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding communities. 

 

How to Prevent Spreading Herpes to Your Partner

If a person has genital herpes, but their partner does not, they can spread the virus that causes it to their partner during sex. Therefore, dermatologists recommend:

Informing your partner, you have genital herpes 

The patient should explain to their partner that there is a risk of passing the virus that causes genital herpes. They should ensure that their partner understands that the following can reduce this risk:

Avoiding sex when you have sores

It is recommended that the patient avoid all sexual contact while they have sores and for one or two days after the sores clear to avoid passing on genital herpes to their sexual partner. In case their partner’s skin or genitals touch a herpes sore, they can easily catch the virus. 

Using a condom when you are free of sores

Even when a patient does not have sores, it is possible to spread the virus to their partner. When the virus is inactive, it travels from the skin (or genitals) to neighboring nerve cells. 

A trigger can awaken this virus at any time. Stress, illness, and surgery are some common triggers. Once the virus wakes up, it travels back to the patient’s skin or genitals. 

At times, when the virus wakes up, the patient will not have any sores or symptoms. During these times, they will not even know that the virus is on their skin or genitals. During these times, it is possible to spread the virus to their sexual partner. This risk can be reduced by using condoms. 

The risk of spreading the virus can also be reduced by taking an antiviral drug daily. Research indicates that if one partner in a relationship has genital herpes and takes an antiviral medication daily, the medicine can reduce the risk of spreading the virus to the other partner. This research study included heterosexual couples with healthy immune systems. 

Despite taking an antiviral every day, the patient must use a condom each time that they engage in sex. In case taking a daily antiviral interest the patient, they should speak to their dermatologist or primary care physician. Women should consult their OB/GYN.

 

How Genital Herpes can Impact Your Pregnancy

If a woman has genital herpes, it is possible to spread the virus to her baby while:

  • Pregnant
  • Giving birth
  • Caring for her newborn

In case the baby gets the virus while in the womb, the mother may experience a miscarriage or deliver the baby prematurely. It can be deadly for the baby if it catches the virus during birth, or shortly thereafter. 

 

What to Tell Your OB/GYN

It’s paramount for the OB/GYN to understand if the patient:

  • Has genital herpes, even if you have not had sores or symptoms for a long period.
  • Does not have genital herpes but is having sex with an individual who does.

The transfer of the virus to the baby can be prevented by taking precautions. Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures.

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Genital Herpes: Diagnosis And Treatment

Genital Herpes: Diagnosis And Treatment | Tampa | HillsboroughA dermatologist can usually diagnose a herpes sore by looking at it and taking a swab from the sore. Lab tests can determine whether the sore contains the herpes simplex virus (HSV), which is the cause for genital herpes. 

For people who do not have a sore or any symptoms, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) do not recommend testing. 

Suncoast Skin Solutions, led by board certified dermatologist Dr. Christopher Ewanowski, provides advanced dermatology treatments to patients in Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and surrounding locations.

 

How is genital herpes treated?

While there is no cure for genital herpes, treatment may be helpful. Self-care can offer relief from symptoms and help the sores heal. Medication can decrease the duration of an outbreak as well as relieve symptoms. 

 

Self-Care for Genital Herpes

Dermatologists recommend the below self-care tips to their patients who have experienced a flare-up:

  • Ensure that the sores are clean and dry
  • Wear loose-fitting, cotton underwear
  • If there is pain in an area, apply a cold press to it
  • To cleanse and soothe painful sores, decrease itchiness, or reduce tenderness, the patient can take Epsom salts bath, soaking for between 10 and 20 minutes.

 

Medicine for Genital Herpes

The dermatologist may prescribe one of the following antiviral medicines to treat genital herpes:

  • Acyclovir (ā-sike-low-veer)
  • Famciclovir (fam-see-clo-veer)
  • Penciclovir (pen-sike-low-veer)
  • Valacyclovir (val-ā-sike-low veer)

It is recommended that anyone with a weakened immune system take medicine. People with a weakened immune system will likely need help to eliminate the sores and symptoms. The symptoms may linger, and sores may not clear without medication. 

The patient should continue to take the medication until all sores are fully healed. If one of the above mentioned medications does not bring relief, the patient may require another drug. Getting acyclovir through an IV may be required for a severe infection. Other antiviral drugs may also be an option.

 

Antiviral Medicine can be Taken Daily

Taking an antiviral medication on a daily basis is effective for some people as they have:

  • Frequent flare-ups
  • A partner who does not have the virus

 

Frequent Outbreaks

A patient can have new outbreaks even if they treat an outbreak. Certain people have multiple outbreaks annually. In case a person experiences six or more outbreaks a year, the dermatologist or another doctor may recommend taking antiviral medication daily.

If taken daily, this medication can reduce how frequently a person develops an outbreak. Studies indicate that it is safe to take every day and can reduce outbreaks by 70 to 80 percent.

 

A Partner Who Does Not Have the Virus

In case the patient’s partner does not have the virus that causes genital herpes, taking antiviral medication daily can reduce the risk of passing the virus to their sexual partner.

Despite taking medicine, a person can still pass the virus on to their partner. Patients can reduce this risk by avoiding sex when they have sores and wearing a condom when they do not. 

In case a patient decides to take medication daily, they will likely take it every day for at least one year. At the end of one year, the dermatologist or another doctor should assess the patient to determine if they still need to take an antiviral daily.

Dr. Ewanowski’s skin care clinic receives patients from Tampa, Brandon, Lutz, Seminole, Riverview, Brooksville, Winter Haven, Daytona Beach, Largo, St. Petersburg, Ocala, Sarasota, Palm Harbor, Central Florida, Florida, and nearby areas for dermatologic as well as medical spa procedures. 

SunCoast Skin Solutions Dermatology offices are located in Tampa / Hillsborough, St. Pete/ Pinellas County , Brandon, Lutz, Winter Haven, Largo, Riverview, Brooksville, Ocala, and Daytona Beach, Sarasota, Florida. Contact us at 1-844-786-3376 or click here.

Credentials