– Herpes simplex virus
is controlled in the body through the body's own immune system. So initially when a
patient is infected with Herpes simplex virus the
symptoms can be very severe, and it's not uncommon that
in the primary outbreak of Herpes simplex virus the
symptomatology is such that a patient feels very ill. They can have flu-like symptoms, they can have swelling of their
lymph nodes and the groin. All those symptoms tend to be self-limited and will resolve in seven to ten days even without treatment. But subsequent to that patients can get episodes of recurrences that tend to be less severe.
The reason why they're less severe is because the immune system
has been exposed to the virus, the immune system develops antibodies that then control viral replication and can help prevent the
severity of the outbreak and subsequent outbreaks. So even though the initial
outbreak may be very severe, the subsequent outbreaks
tend to be not as severe. Additionally, if the
patient has that diagnosis and the symptoms are recognized early in the course of the outbreak, medication can be started immediately which will help decrease the length and severity of the outbreak.