Herpes Symptoms in Men

Herpes symptoms in men can vary greatly from one individual to another, with some men exhibiting obvious signs of infection, while others’ symptoms are so mild that they go unnoticed. Not surprisingly, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) estimates that, although one out of every nine American men between the ages of 14 and 49 is infected, nearly 80% of those with genital herpes (or HSV-2) are unaware that they carry the virus.

Most men discover that they are infected with HSV-2 only after they’ve had an initial outbreak of painful, fluid-filled blisters and sores on their genitals. This “primary outbreak” generally occurs within two to 20 days of being exposed to the virus for the first time through sexual contact. Because research shows that fewer than 40% of newly infected men develop blisters, however, it is important to be aware of other commonly experienced herpes symptoms in men (many of which are ignored or misdiagnosed).

In addition to blisters and sores on the genitals or in the pelvic region, the following warning signs are also commonly associated with a herpes outbreak:

  • Tingling, itching or burning sensations in the genital, groin, buttocks, and thigh areas
  • Sudden onset of headache, fever, chills and fatigue
  • Painful urination
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Unusual muscle aches or sharp, shooting pains (particularly in the groin and lower back)

In cases where a genital herpes infection is present, the sudden appearance of these symptoms (particularly within three to five days after sexual intercourse) indicates that the HSV-2 virus has begun replicating itself near nerve clusters under the skin. Men who suffer from outbreaks of blisters and sores will generally experience one or more of these symptoms just prior to the appearance of ulcers. Because the majority of those infected with the HSV-2 virus do not develop blisters or sores, however, these often-overlooked herpes symptoms in men may be the only indication of an outbreak. (more…)

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Does Pubic Shaving Lead to Genital Herpes in Men?

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