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Genital herpes in pregnancy

Published: 17/10/2014

Genital herpes is a common sexually transmitted infection caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV). There are two types, HSV1 and HSV2. Both types can be found in the genital and anal area (genital herpes). Herpes simplex can also occur around the mouth and nose (cold sores) and fingers and hand (herpetic whitlows).

This patient information leaflet is mainly about genital herpes in pregnancy. It covers:

  • How genital herpes is passed on
  • The symptoms of genital herepes
  • What you should do if you think you have genital herpes
  • What genital herpes might mean for your baby
  • How to reduce the risk to your baby
  • What treatments you’ll be offered

This patient information leaflet is based on the RCOG clinical guideline Management of Genital Herpes in Pregnancy, which contains a full list of the sources of evidence used to produce this guidance.

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