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Herpes Simplex Virus

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Submitted By PWebster110
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Genital Herpes Virus

In this world today there are many viruses that effects the human population. Herpes is one of these diseases. It is no less then a self-limited communicable disease. Yet its "victims" describe it as devastating, and society treats those with it like lepers. Until recently most people had never heard of herpes virus. Even doctors were familiar with the virus, yet in the past few years , it has become an epidemic. Why I chose to study this topic is more on how herpes affects a person emotionally. Why should a disease like this which rarely causes great physical problems, be such trouble to many people? It is not as devastating as tuberculosis. Its not a killer like cancer. And it is not as disabling as the flu. It isn't as bad a smoking is to your health, so why should so many people care about it. I think that the main reason is that herpes affects the persons personality. To many, there is nothing more important then that persons genitals. One's genitals gives one the ability to love and to be loved.

Another reason is that this virus, unlike many in today's society, is incurable. With todays fast food restaurants, great health insurance, and one hour prescriptions, people have a hard time dealing with herpes being incurable. The incurability and recurrent nature of herpes makes it a control issue and no one likes to lose control. There is an unbuilding factor in this issue. There is always new research going on for this disease. This topic interests me on an great level. I myself get cold sores and I love to learn of new things that happens to others and cures they are working on. This study can help others for a cure, because I think a cure is greatly needed. In this essay I will examine several case studies and their results. I will also include a "Most Common Questions" for any other person that might use this essay to take in new information.

I have used several venues of information. I have dealt mainly with books, because I find they give the best information and are more understandable. On the Internet I received a lot of information and I even talked in a chat area with other people that have Herpes, in a greater degree then myself, and I learned how people deal with it and how they confront it. It is a more widely spread disease than I thought it could be.

Herpes Simplex Virus(HSV)

Herpes simplex virus (HSV) is an alpha herpes virus. HSV infection can result in a wide spectrum of diseases ranging from the mild (e.g. herpes labialis) to the severe (e.g. neonatal herpes, herpes encephalitis). The severity of the resulting disease due to herpes virus infection is affected both by prior infection and the immune status of the individual.

The diagnosis of mucocutaneous manifestations of HSV disease is predominantly clinical. However, the majority of genital HSV infections are not clinically overt. Many patients have 'atypical' lesions, some have subclinical symptoms and others are asymptomatic. Patients who present with first-episode genital herpes may have either a primary infection or a reactivation of an infection which was previously asymptomatic. Laboratory diagnosis is likely to be used to confirm the clinical diagnosis, in epidemiological studies and to look for asymptomatic viral shedding. When diagnosis is made clinically and the disease is severe enough to require treatment, antiviral therapy should be started before the laboratory diagnosis is known, since waiting for test results may introduce a significant time delay. In visceral manifestations of HSV infection laboratory diagnosis such as culture, antigen detection or application of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) may be required.

In Scandinavia and the USA a change in the epidemiology of HSV infection has been shown with a decreasing incidence of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) infection and an increasing incidence of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) infection. Simplistically, HSV-1 most commonly causes oropharyngeal and labial herpes and HSV-2 genital herpes, although each virus type may infect either site. Improved serological diagnostic procedures have made typing of HSV-1 and HSV-2 infections more accurate. Typing can also be performed by application of monoclonal antibodies to lesion scrapings or cells from viral culture

Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV)

Varicella zoster virus (VZV) is an alpha herpes virus that after primary infection becomes latent in cells within sensory ganglia; subsequent reactivation causes further disease. Primary infection results in varicella (chickenpox), usually in childhood, and reactivation later in life causes herpes zoster (shingles). The diagnosis of each disease is largely clinical and rarely needs to be confirmed by laboratory investigations.

In both conditions the severity of the disease increases with age. Varicella may be a serious infection in adults, and when it occurs in pregnancy, can sometimes result in congenital infection. Herpes zoster may be accompanied by extreme pain and other complications such as ocular damage or encephalitis. Treatment of VZV infections is appropriate in many patients, dependent on factors such as their age and the risk of developing complications.

Epstein-Barr Virus(EBV)

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a gamma herpes virus as opposed to herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and type 2 (HSV-2) and varicella zoster virus (VZV) which are alpha herpes viruses. It infects mainly B lymphocytes where it remains latent after primary infection.

Exposure to EBV is often asymptomatic, and only apparent from seroconversion in most individuals. However, primary infection may be symptomatic and illness associated with reactivation of latent virus is seen in immunodeficient patients. Several of the conditions described below can be caused either by primary infection or recurring viral replication. The most common presentation is of infectious mononucleosis (glandular fever) in adolescents, and in Africa Burkitt's lymphoma is typically associated with EBV infection. Other lymphoproliferative conditions such as non-Hodgkin's lymphoma arise from EBV infection in immunocompromised patients, and atypical cases of EBV may present as viral encephalitis.

Human Cytomegalovirus (HCMV)

Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a beta herpes virus which is widespread throughout the world. Primary infection is usually asymptomatic. Disease due to HCMV frequently causes congenital infection (following maternal primary infection or reactivation during pregnancy) or neonatal infection (infection during birth or in the immediate post-natal period) and disease in the immunocompromised (reactivation of latent virus or receipt of organs or blood products from HCMV-positive donors). The exact site of latency of HCMV has not been established.

Current antiviral therapy for HCMV infection is suboptimal. The available therapies can only be given intravenously and have severe side-effects. Treatment is not available for congenital HCMV infection. Opinions differ on the optimum time for initiation of anti-HCMV therapy in the immunocompromised patient. Despite suboptimal therapy of the diseases caused by HCMV infection, diagnosis is important to avoid further diagnostic investigations and to evaluate treatment options.…...

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