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Are all herpes viruses the same viral skin infection?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

Just as there are different kinds of cold viruses, there are different kinds of herpes viruses. These viruses are responsible for different illnesses. For example, herpes zoster produces shingles, while herpes simplex type 1 generally produces cold sores; herpes simplex type 2 produces genital herpes, although herpes simplex type 1 can cause genital herpes. Herpes infections can also vary in how serious they are; very young and elderly people, as well as people with compromised immune systems can experience more severe symptoms than the general population.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.