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Recurrent Herpetic Labialis

Recurrent Herpetic Labialis is a sign of infection caused by Herpes Simplex I virus. The infection usually occurs on the lips and the edge of the nostril. The exudates contain Herpes Simplex I virus which is highly infectious.

Photograph showing the presence of recurrent Herpetic Labialis near the angle of mouth of the lower lip.

Symptoms

When the symptoms start to appear, there is an itchy and burning sensation in the affected area where blisters will later be formed. When the blisters burst, they become shallow ulcers of varying shapes.

Why is there Recurrent Herpetic Labialis?

After recovery from Primary Herpetic Stomatitis, the Herpes Simplex I virus becomes dormant in the body. The virus will become active again whenever the body resistance is low, causing Recurrent Herpetic Labialis.
Factors leading to low body resistance include:

Treatment

Generally, Recurrent Herpetic Labialis will heal within 2 weeks. To avoid pain or passing the virus to others, you can try the following methods:

Prevention

Herpes Simplex I virus remains dormant in the nerve cells of the body. There is neither medication therapy nor treatment modality that can completely destroy the virus. Therefore, the only thing we can do to prevent its recurrence is to increase our body resistance. For example:

Last revision date: 18 January 2012