• The herpes simplex virus is most commonly known as the cold sore, but it can cause infection in the genitals
  • The virus is in the blisters
  • If the fluid comes out of a blister on your mucous membrane, you can get the virus
  • About 1 in 3 people will get a cold sore in life
  • People with HIV often have a more severe course of herpes and might develop pneumonia
  • When babies come into contact with herpes, they can develop a serious brain infection
  • A cold sore is not an HIV indicator condition. A herpes infection of the vagina, penis or anus is




The herpes simplex virus causes various skin reactions. The most well-known is the cold sore, where the virus causes blisters and later scabs around the lips. Cold sores are very common. About 1 in 3 people will develop cold sores in their lifetime. Herpes simplex virus can also cause skin lesions on the vagina, penis or anus. We then call it genital herpes. Genital herpes is an STD. You can contract it if you have sex with someone who is currently having herpes blisters. If you have a cold sore, you should be careful when hugging young babies. They can get a serious brain infections from the herpes simplex virus.


The blisters that form with an infection with the herpes simplex virus can be painful. They may tingle, burn, or itch. The blisters dry up after one or two days. Then scabs form. These scabs can also sometimes itch.
The scab will go away on its own. If you have a genital herpes infection, urinating can be painful.
At the first infection with herpes simplex virus, you may have a fever or swollen lymph nodes. This will pass by itself. People with a weakened immune system are more likely to have an infection with the herpes simplex virus and often experience more serious symptoms. They may develop a long lasting ulcer, or experience inflammation of the lungs, esophagus, gut, brain or eyes.


You can get the herpes virus if there is contact between the mucous membranes and the blisters with the herpes virus. The virus can be caused through the mucous membranes of the mouth, the eyes, the vagina, the penis or the anus. In addition, it can also be passed on from mother to child during childbirth. A herpes infection of the vagina, the penis of the anus, can cause you to contract another STD.

Hiv and herpes

The immune system is compromised in people with an HIV infection. As a result, they are less able to clear up the herpes virus. The infection is more serious and can come back more often. The herpes virus can also cause an infection in the organs. A herpes infection of the penis, vagina or anus makes it easier for you to contract HIV if you have sex with someone with an HIV infection.
HIV indicator conditions are conditions or symptoms that occur more often in people with an underlying HIV infection than in people without an HIV infection. Herpes is one of the HIV indicator conditions. If you have or have had Herpes and have not been tested for HIV, it is advisable to ask your doctor or general practitioner for an HIV test. Find it difficult to ask for an HIV test? You may download a call card that will help you formulate your question.