I Have a Cold Sore — Did I Get It From Someone With Herpes?

The Short Answer from OB/Gyn physicians

I Have a Cold Sore — Did I Get It From Someone With Herpes?

Q: I have a cold sore. Did I get it from someone with herpes? Will my new partner get it?

A. There are two types of herpes virus strain:

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  1. Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) is also known as oral herpes, cold sores or fever blisters. It generally occurs above the waist.
  2. Herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2) is also known as genital herpes — and it usually is found below the waist. Genital herpes is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases.

Many people don’t realize that you can get either virus (HSV-1 or HSV-2) in either area (above or below the waist) through oral-genital sex, self-inoculation, or during sexual contact during an outbreak of this virus.

— From the book Us! Our life. Our Health. Our Legacy. by Linda Bradley, MD and Margaret McKenzie, MD

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