Vaginal Herpes

Vaginal Herpes | Female Genital Herpes Just a quick post to let you know that vaginal herpes is not different from any other form of herpes.   All herpes viruses come from the herpes simplex virus of which there are two types.  I know this is shocking but they are actually called Herpes Simplex 1 (HSV1) and Herpes Simplex 2 (HSV2).  While it is possible for either virus to appear on either the mouth or genital region, the vast majority, experience HSV1 on the mouth (yes, all cold sores are HSV1 – don’t listen to people who say, “It’s just a cold sore, not herpes.”

At this point it’s your call whether to kindly suggest they seek out any medical dictionary or reference literature), and HSV2  in the genital region.  This would be female genital herpes, vaginal herpes, vagina herpes, HSV2 – we can come up with many names but it’s all the same.   Learn more at

You don’t need to spend a lot of time (like I did) searching the internet for scary pictures or evil herpes experiences.  It’s not the end of the world.  And sometimes, because of what genital herpes can teach you about yourself,  it’s the beginning of something great.

Vaginal Herpes

UPDATE (May 11, 2012):

I received a complaint (see comments below) that I would use the term, “vaginal herpes”, and that somehow I was suggesting that genital herpes comes from women.   The author of  the comment requested that I change my terminology to, “genital herpes”.   Please understand that I in no way attribute any form of herpes as starting or spreading from only women.

I can say that according to Google, over 150 people search the term vaginal herpes every day and like I responded to the author I was attempting to reach this audience and let them know that vaginal herpes is in fact not different from genital herpes.   People hear and call it different things and I wanted to set the record straight that female herpes, vaginal herpes, whatever you want to call it is either HSV1 or HSV2.   So please don’t misunderstand.  I do appreciate any and all comments and welcome your feedback.

You will also note from my responding comment that HSV is nothing to be ashamed of.  Women do contract and spread herpes – we are equally as responsible as men for protecting our partners and using effective means (condoms, Valtrex) to stop the spread of HSV and to reduce the rates of herpes transmission.

Take care and be safe!


Image Credit:  Thomas Hawk


  1. I’m almost certain I have genital herpes….got an appointment set up for tomorrow. This blog is exactly what I was searching for…google has really been letting me down these days. Anyways, I really wanted to talk about the symptoms of genital herpes with a woman who has it. I have vaginal ulcers and burning with urination, but on top of that I have extremely excessive and watery discharge. Its really bad..the other day I had to wear a pad and when I sat down for my hour-long class…when I got out of my seat there was a leaky spot on my chair! My fluids had seeped through the pad, my underwear, my jeans, and onto the chair. Needless to say..I was horrified. When I went to see if this is a normal symptom I couldn’t find any horror stories at all like mine online :(. I wonder if this is normal, also my roommates are starting to complain of a strange odor….I’m really embarrassed and I just want to know if this is normal with a female genital herpes outbreak.

  2. I am so very sorry that you are going through this experience. I’m glad that you are reaching out and that you have a Dr. appointment tomorrow (today?). The vaginal ulcers sound about right – it depends on their size though, but they should begin to heal. The other symptoms sound too excessive to be vaginal herpes.

    Even at my worst outbreaks (and there have been well over a hundred), I have not had any leaking. Especially to the degree of leaking through a pad or having a strange odor. You didn’t mention your sexual activity in the last month. Most often genital herpes will appear within 7 – 14 days of exposure.

    What I can say is this: I have spoken with many women that have genital herpes and your symptoms are too excessive to be considered normal. That being said, I am not a Dr. and herpes is a strange virus that doesn’t always act in a predictable fashion (my worst outbreak was on the back of my knee – about 2 inches in diameter!).

    I am really hoping that your Dr. visit can clear this up for you. For your sake, even though it isn’t the end of the world, let’s hope it’s not herpes but something more benign like a bad yeast infection that you can clear up with one treatment.

    Take care and let me know how it works out.

    Nanci Elliott

  3. I am so very sorry that you have chosen to refer to this disease as “Vaginal Herpes”. It is Herpes Simplex virus-2, and gender has nothing to do with it. If it did, men would not transmit or contract it. It could be called Phallic Herpes by your estimation as well. please correct this, it is offensive and erroneous. Herpes does not come from women, and it is insulting that you should suggest this.

  4. Ginny,

    I am very sorry that you took offense to my post. My point was only to convey that vaginal herpes is in fact Herpes Simplex 2, and to erase any confusion otherwise. Of course herpes does not come from women but as my blog is geared toward women with genital herpes, I have chosen to post based on this audience. It is not me that created this definition – over 150 people search the term, “vaginal herpes” on Google each and every day. I was trying to provide valuable information to these women (or men) that believe that vaginal herpes is a name for this virus.

    The underlying message of your comment appears to be that herpes is shameful and that I should correct any insinuation it comes from women. Herpes is NOT shameful and even if women transmit or contract genital herpes (which we obviously do), we do not have to be ashamed. Living successfully with herpes is not difficult and this is essentially the message I am trying to provide through my blog.

  5. Hi, okay I really don’t know if I have the virus or not yet but I have been looking up symptoms and this is the only thing that comes close. Every time I have and “outbreak” they always seem to clear up when it is time for me to go to my doctors appt. And they always say the bump has to be present for them to diagnose it. But it is always white clumpy and watery discharge, just itchy and red first and then if I scratched my skin around my vagina will become raw, crack them a few days later small bumps may appear….does this sound like common herpes outbreaks? And can I get tested for the virus even if I don’t have “outbreaks”? Please help thanks!

  6. I agree with Ginny that it is most unfortunate that you have chosen to use a completely inaccurate term to describe HSV-2, which is otherwise *correctly* known as “genital herpes”. It affects all genders, not just women.

    And yes, I mean “all” genders. Gender is not a binary concept as most people think. There are millions of people out there who are neither clearly male nor female anatomically, or their genitalia do not match the gender they identify as.

    But I digress.

    Google search terms that people employ do not define diseases. If you are going to write a blog about one, it would greatly increase your credibility to use the proper medical terms. I was going to link to you, but now that I see these posts (including the ones recommending that people not use condoms), I have changed my mind. And I’m not going to read much more.

    If you want to increase your Google hits, I would suggest that you use the proper terminology and then reference the “vaginal” term as one that some people use (and then mention that it is inaccurate), or just use it as a tag. Tags are great for snagging Google searches when you want hits from alternative terminology.

    klg (former paramedic, drug rep, and premed)

  7. I have responded to kinkylittlegirl here at:


  9. I am 16 years old ….. I lost my virginity almost a year ago and me and my partner didn’t use protection ne of the times … Any how i just went to the doctors and they told me i have genital herpes … I am shocked i cannot stop crying … And i dont know what to do it started with one little bump andtons of wattery discharge then it turn a greenish coler and the bumps multiplyed ! … They burn and itch like crazy .. Any help ? Please i am desperate :(

  10. Thank you so much. I am 19 and I just recently discovered I have herpes type 2. It’s been hard deal with it. I couldn’t stop crying and literally never expected I would ever get this. I am going through my first outbreak and thank god I have such a supportive family. It’s been hard and it hurts like heck. Reading your blog and story has made me feel so much better about what is going on. I see it now as a eye opener and that everything is going to be just fine:) it can happen to anyone but this will Definetely help me keep my life in check. Again thanks.. Your blog has helped a bunch!

    I am having a lot of discharge on my underwear.. It’s yellow and I was wondering if that was normal? It doesn’t really smell strongly but i do have a slight odor when I am checking down there. It’s not really noticeable unless i have my legs open and I am really trying to smell it when I’m cleaning down there..

  11. Hi Jazzel, I think discharge like that and a slight odor is normal. Something I recently discovered that really helps ease the pain of the sores and speeds the healing/drying process is tea tree oil. If you put it on a cotton ball and gently dab the area it stings real bad for a few seconds and then it gets warm and almost numbs it. You can get it without alcohol so it doesn’t sting as much but I prefer with because it helps dry out the sores faster. I checked with a naturalpathic doctor and she said it is something that she recommends to her patients so it is ok to do. Just an FYI to anyone out there looking for some pain relief!

  12. Hi, 2 or 3 days ago I got a kinda raw spot on my vagina it didn’t hurt it never had a head on it or anything. I got like 2 more but they itched a little bit and just kinda went away, I have the one raw spot still. I have a VERY watery discharge, no color, a very small odor. I always feel nauseated and I have body aches. What could this be?


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