Thursday, May 30, 2024

What Is The Difference Between Hpv And Herpes

Symptoms Of Hpv Vs Herpes

Understanding Genital Herpes

In many cases, these two STDs do not result in noticeable symptoms or health changes, which is why it is so common for them to be transmitted.

According to the CDC, 90% of HPV infections go away on their own within two years. However, if it does not go away, it may then cause symptoms such as genital warts or warts in the throat, and certain cancers

The types of HPV that cause warts are not the same types that cause cancer, so having one symptom does not mean you will develop the other.

When HPV causes cancer, there are often no symptoms shown until the cancer reaches later stages, which makes regular screenings important.

As for herpes, if symptoms develop, they often occur within 2 to 20 days after virus exposure. Those with herpes will often first notice itching, tingling, or burning before the sores or blisters begin to form around the genitals or mouth.

Oral herpes sores typically develop in or around the lips and mouth, although they can form on the tongue or elsewhere on the face. These sores usually last 2 to 3 weeks before they go away.

Treating The Symptoms Of Hpv

Most cases of HPV dont require any treatment. The virus will go away on its own in many people. However, there are treatment options available for treating the symptoms of HPV.

Genital warts from HPV may occasionally go away without medication. Sometimes, medications are used to help lessen the effects of the warts. These include:

Your doctor may also apply trichloroacetic acid or bicloroacetic acid, or cryotherapy to help treat genital warts.

Sometimes a doctor will remove the warts, though this removes the wart not the virus itself. If a high-risk HPV is found, your doctor may monitor you to ensure that cancer doesnt occur, or is caught early.

Symptoms Of Herpes And Symptoms Of Hpv

Those who have HPV dont usually experience any symptoms at all. You might not even realize you have it!

However, the most common symptom is warts, though since there are over 150 HPV types, the symptoms depend on the type you contracted. Some can cause warts, others may increase the risk of you developing HPV-related cancer. Warts can occur in the genital area or the mouth and throat, growing as single growths or a cluster of growths, even looking like a cauliflower.

As for herpes, there are two types: HSV-1 and HSV-2. Both types can affect parts of your body, causing either oral or genital herpes. Similar to HPV, herpes might not have symptoms or very mild to unnoticeable symptoms that you may confuse with other things, like ingrown hairs, skin conditions, or the flu.

The symptoms depend on where herpes affects you. Either way, you are most likely to experience flu-like symptoms, redness, swelling, itching, or pain in the infected area, blisters or cold sores, among others.

To diagnose HPV, you can undergo an HPV test, which is also sometimes used during Pap tests. Or, visual examination of warts may diagnose certain cases.

For herpes, physical exams are done if there are lesions taken. Samples may be taken to the lab to diagnose the viral cultures.

When treating HPV, the virus can’t be cured, though you may be prescribed drugs for warts, or they can be removed when necessary. HPV that was noted from a pap test may have to be managed differently.

Also Check: Chances Of Getting Herpes From Infected Partner

How Are Hpv And Herpes Diagnosed

Women aged 30+ are screened for cervical cancer whenever they get a pap test. An abnormal test shows potentially cancerous cells, which could suggest the presence of HPV. At this point, there is no screening test for males. However, the active virus can be diagnosed in men and women during a physical exam just by examining the lesions.

Healthcare providers dont tend to test for herpes unless their patients are showing symptoms. Most healthcare providers can diagnose herpes simply by looking at the lesions. Care teams can swab lesions and send them away for testing to get a definitive herpes diagnosis.

What Causes Hpv & Herpes

Herpes Vs HPV: Differences, Symptoms, Testing, Diagnosis and Treatment
  • Human papillomavirus and herpes simplex virus are the causative agents of genital warts and herpes, respectively.
  • There exist several strains of these viruses and each of these strains can show up with varying symptoms.
  • There are over a hundred strains of HPV that can cause the condition. Certain HPV strains are capable of causing cervical and oral cancer based on the location of infection.
  • HPV strains 16 & 18 are considered some of the riskiest, while strains 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58 are fairly high on the risk scale as well.
  • HPV strains 6 & 11 are some of the most common and are low-risk strains.

Also Check: Which Doctor To Consult For Genital Herpes

What Causes Hpv Vs Herpes

Both HPV and herpes are transmitted by way of skin-to-skin contact, and not just of the sexual nature. Herpes in particular can be spread by something as innocent as a peck on the cheek from a well-intentioned aunt or grandma. In fact, many who live with the virus contracted it as children this very way. Contrary to popular belief, the chances of contracting herpes from touching a shared surface or by sharing items are minimal as the virus can only survive a few seconds away from a human host. Genital warts are more contagious than other types of warts and spread most commonly via sexual activity.

What Are The Symptoms Of Genital Herpes

Most women with genital herpes do not know they have it. But, if you get symptoms with the first outbreak of genital herpes, they can be severe. Genital herpes also can be severe and long-lasting in people whose immune systems do not work properly, such as women with HIV.

The first signs of genital herpes usually show up two to 12 days after having sexual contact with someone who has herpes. Symptoms can last from two to four weeks. There are other early symptoms of genital herpes:

  • Feeling of pressure in the abdomen
  • Flu-like symptoms, including fever

If you have any symptoms of genital herpes, see a doctor or nurse.

Also Check: Do Condoms Protect Against Herpes

How Common Is Hpv And Herpes

HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Nearly 80 million Americans have it, and around 14 million new cases occur every year.

Herpes is the nations second most common sexually transmitted infection. Approximately 50 million Americans have genital herpes caused by HSV-2, and around 776,000 new cases occur every year.

Cervical Cancer Risk Rises If Women With Hpv Also Have Herpes Infection

Types of Herpes

First published online: June 1, 2003

Women who have human papillomavirus infection of the cervix have a greater risk of invasive cervical cancer if they also have genital herpes, according to a pooled analysis of case-control studies.1 Women with invasive cervical cancer were much more likely than women without cervical cancer to have HPV-infected cervical cells, but they were also nearly twice as likely to have antibodies to herpes simplex virus type 2 . Among all women who had HPV-infected cervical cells, women who also had antibodies to HSV-2 had more than twice the risk of squamous cell carcinoma and more than three times the risk of adenocarcinoma or adenosquamous cell carcinoma relative to women who did not have these antibodies. Neither past sexual behavior nor chlamydial infection modified these associations.

On average, women with invasive cervical cancer were 48-49 years old, and women without cancer were 47 years old. Almost all of the women with cervical cancer were HPV-positive , compared with 15% of the women without cervical cancer. Women with cervical cancer were significantly more likely than women without cancer to test positive for HSV-2 .

Read Also: How To Treat Herpes Type 1

So How About Genital Warts

Genital warts are caused by certain strains of HPV. How they look can vary, but they usually appear as bumps in the genital area.

Its important to know that genital warts spread through genital contact, so they can appear in other parts of the body such as the mouth.

Most genital warts will clear up by themselves.

However the treatment for warts can include freezing, applying creams, laser treatment and even surgery in rare cases.

Whats The Difference Between Genital Herpes And Oral Herpes

Because there are 2 different kinds of herpes simplex viruses that can live on many body parts, lots of people are confused about what to call these infections. But its actually pretty simple:

  • When you get either HSV-1 or HSV-2 on or around your genitals , its called genital herpes.

  • When you get either HSV-1 or HSV-2 in or around your lips, mouth, and throat, its called oral herpes. Oral herpes sores are sometimes called cold sores or fever blisters.

HSV-1 usually causes oral herpes, and HSV-2 usually causes genital herpes each strain prefers to live on its favorite area. But its totally possible for both types of herpes simplex to infect either area. For example, you can get HSV-1 on your genitals if someone with a cold sore on their lips gives you oral sex. And you can get HSV-2 in your mouth if you give oral sex to someone with HSV-2 on their genitals.

Also Check: Should I Get Tested For Herpes Without Symptoms

Is There Any Std Home Test Kit Available

One of our STD testing providers offers at-home Herpes and HPV testing. The home test kits are mostly preferred by people who are not convenient to get tested by visiting the lab or who do not have time to visit the lab.

At-home Herpes and HPV testing require a sample taken using a cotton swab in the infected areas or a blood drop using the given finger prick. Before taking the sample, read the instructions carefully mentioned in the kit and after collecting the sample, post it back to the given address. The results will be emailed to you in 2 5 business days.

How Do You Prevent Hpv And Herpes

How to Tell the Difference Between Herpes and Pimples (With Photos ...

Using condoms and dental dams during sex is a great way to prevent the spread of both herpes and HPV. These contraceptives only prevent the spread of covered areas though, so be careful if you spot any lesions that cannot be covered.

You should also avoid touching your own HPV and herpes lesions or other peoples. If you accidentally come in contact with a lesion, washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water can reduce your risk of spreading the infection.

Getting the HPV vaccine is an excellent way to protect yourself against this sexually transmitted infection. Its most effective before you start having sex, ideally around the age of 11 or 12. If you are older and have not been exposed to HPV, HPV vaccination may still benefit you. There is no vaccine for herpes at this time.

Read Also: How To Rid Your Body Of Herpes

Cost Of Herpes And Hpv Testing With Insurance

Many health insurance policies in the U.S. do not cover the cost of the STD tests like Herpes of HPV, you are required to pay out of pocket. However, the coverage offered by private health insurance policies and national health insurance programs varies widely. So we recommend you to check with your insurance company.

Our Herpes and HPV testing providers do not accept any health insurance. But, on request, they can provide you with a receipt containing all the details like the name and code of the test, and CPT code which is necessary for insurance reimbursement purposes.

Herpes Vs Hpv Treatment

  • HPV and herpes are not curable conditions. However, they can be managed and monitored whenever they show symptoms.
  • In most cases, HPV does not require any treatment as the bodyâs immune system is capable of fighting off the virus.
  • In case you do develop genital warts, your doctor might prescribe medication or use physical and chemical methods to remove them.
  • However, removing warts does not, in any case, remove the virus.
  • It is important to remain vigilant of cancer-causing HPV strains if detected.
  • Your doctor will monitor you regularly with frequent examinations if you have tested positive for a high-risk HPV strain.
  • Herpes, on the other hand, can be managed by antiviral medications and symptomatic therapy that can help shorten the outbreaks of sores and other symptoms.
  • Outbreaks can recur several times, and current treatment revolves around reducing the intensity and making it harder to transmit the virus.

Read Also: How Would You Know If You Have Herpes

How Do You Get Herpes And Genital Warts

You can contract genital warts through:

  • Sharing sex toys with an infected person

In rare cases, it may be passed down from the mother to her child .

Herpes is transmitted through , :

  • Body fluids like saliva
  • Unprotected sexual intercourse
  • Touching active sores

It can be passed on from the mother to her newborn child .

Avoid sexual intercourse with a partner who may have either genital warts or herpes. Its better to get tested to avoid spreading the infection. Both STIs are non-curable. However, an early diagnosis can help control the symptoms. Check out the treatment options in the next section.

Comprehensive Std Testing Cost

What is HPV?

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Treating The Symptoms Of Herpes

Theres currently no cure for herpes, but there are treatments that can reduce the symptoms and make it less likely to transmit the virus to a sex partner.

Antiviral medications are prescribed to help clear up symptoms or reduce the frequency of outbreaks. Some antivirals that may be prescribed include:

What Are Treatment Options For Hpv Vs Herpes

Unfortunately, there is no known cure for HPV or herpes. Once youve contracted either, it will stay with you for life even when signs arent present. The good news is chancre outbreaks and genital warts caused by both HPV and herpes can be treated. Prescription medication can help in the removal of genital warts and can minimize the appearance and intensity of chancres. Keep in mind, these medications will only treat the outbreaks themselves and will not rid your body of the virus entirely.

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Genital Warts Vs Herpes

Now letâs compare and contrast these two viruses and their symptoms and course of treatments.

âGenital Warts vs. Genital Herpes:


GH: Herpes simplex virus type 2

GW: Sexual contact with someone with the virus.

GH: Sexual contact with someone with the virus.

âBehavioral differences

GW: Warts generally do not clear on their own. Removal or spot treatment is needed to remove.

GH: Appear as a series of breakouts that flare up, heal, and possibly reappear. Reoccurrence is known as flare-ups.


GW: Wart removal or topical wart treatment.

GH: Medication to shorten outbreaks.


GW: Labeled as a transient infection, the body will often clear the virus within 1 to 2 years. In some rarer cases, however, the infection can be persistent and long-term. This is a cause for concern as it may lead to cancer.HSV1 and HSV2 infections are lifelong.

GH: There is no known cure for herpes. The outbreaks can be managed with medications.

How Do You Prevent Hpv Vs Herpes

Genital Warts Vs Herpes

The methods of preventing HPV vs herpes can vary as well. The best way to prevent HPV is to get the HPV vaccine. Its recommended that children get their first of two vaccine doses around age 11 or 12 . The vaccine has been proven to be safe and effective with only minor and temporary side effects possible . If you werent vaccinated as a child, you can get a vaccine up until the age of 26 with no issues. Adults between the ages of 27 and 45 should consult with their physician prior to getting the vaccine.

Unfortunately no such vaccine exists for HSV/herpes. To minimize the spread of herpes, youll want to be extremely mindful of who you are kissing and with whom you are engaging in sexual acts.

Condoms and other safe sex practices can help prevent the spread of both HSV and herpes but will not eliminate the risk entirely. Since both viruses are spread by skin-to-skin contact, birth control measures such as pills or IUDs are ineffective in preventing their spread.

Recommended Reading: What Causes Multiple Herpes Outbreaks

Hpv And Herpes: Whats The Difference

Its a legitimate curiosity. HPV and genital herpes can, in many cases, present similar symptoms. Its not always immediately discernible which virus you or a partner may carry without proper testing. Still, some distinguishing factors exist between the two that can help rule out one over the other.

What Else Can Be Mistaken For Hpv And Herpes

Noticing any sort of bump, rash, or blemish on or around the genitals can have you thinking and fearing the worst. And while weve discussed herpes and genital warts at length, there are actually several other possible explanations for unusual appearances in the nether region. And most are completely harmless and nothing to get worked up about. Conditions such as ingrown hairs, razor burn, cysts, skin tags, folliculitis, and angioma can all cause odd bumps or discolorations on or near the genitals. And if youre ever unsure, its always worth discussing with your physician.

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