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Common Skin Conditions

Herpes Simplex Virus

Herpes simplex virus (HSV) is a contagious viral disease. It has two forms, HSV-1 (which presents with symptoms in and around the mouth) and HSV-2 (the strain that usually causes genital herpes, a sexually transmitted disease). However, lesions can appear on and be transferred to any part of your body, or be transferred to another person. HSV-1 can appear as outbreaks of painful blisters known as “cold sores” (since they often occur in association with a cold or fever). HSV-2 appears the same way but is often “hidden” internally in women (in areas like the vagina, etc) and can cause numerous symptoms such as itching, throbbing pain, and fever; in addition to a blistering rash. However, the severity varies from person to person.  There is no permanent cure for herpes, but there are treatments to successfully manage outbreaks by controlling their severity and decreasing their frequency.

Dr. Davis can treat herpes by:

  • Prescribing a combination of oral and/or topical therapy.
  • Prescribing continuous therapy to suppress future episodes and contagion if one has frequent outbreaks.

Herpes Zoster Virus (Shingles)

Herpes Zoster, better known as Shingles, is caused by the same virus as chicken pox, when the virus reemerges from its dormant state. Unlike chicken pox, where blisters are widespread, the rash of Herpes Zoster causes a linear series of blisters (regularly clustered in circles) that are often preceded by pain in the affected area. This rash is contagious to individuals who have not had chicken pox or the varicella vaccine; who can then develop chicken pox with exposure to someone with Herpes Zoster on an exposed site. Treatment is very effective and requires an oral medication which should be started as soon as possible. This medication will speed resolution of the rash as well as decrease pain. Prompt treatment can also prevent post-herpetic neuralgia which is persistent pain along the nerve of the infection.





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