Sunday, March 25, 2012

New Tool Against Genital Herpes?

A novel helicase-primase inhibitor with antiviral activity against the varicella zoster virus might provide an alternative as potent as current treatments for the genital herpes simplex virus (HSV), according to a phase 2 study presented as a late-breaking study here at the American Academy of Dermatology 70th Annual Meeting.

The findings are important because HSV resistance to oral nucleoside analogues, such as valacyclovir and acyclovir, is a problem, and the current alternative, foscarnet, has adverse effects and requires intravenous administration, explained presenter Rachel Gordon, MD, from the Center for Clinical Studies at the University of Texas in Houston.

The randomized, blinded, proof-of-concept trial compared the safety and efficacy of a helicase-primase inhibitor known as ASP2151 with valacyclovir and placebo for the treatment of recurrent genital herpes.

Among the 695 adults enrolled, 437 (mean age, 40 years; 70% female) had a recurrence of genital herpes and were randomized to receive 1 of 4 doses of ASP2151 (100, 200, 400, or 1200 mg) or valacyclovir 500 mg or placebo twice daily for 3 days.

To meet the eligibility criteria, patients had to have had at least 4 episodes of recurrent genital herpes in the previous 12 months and had to have received no suppressive therapy for the last recurrence.

Almost half of the cohort (49%) was infected with HSV-2, 43% was infected with both HSV-1 and HSV-2, and the remainder was infected with HSV-1.

The primary study outcome — median number of hours to lesion healing — was similar for all doses of ASP2151 (120 hours for 100 mg, 106 hours for 200 mg, 116 hours for 400 mg, and 102 hours for 1200 mg) and valacyclovir (114 hours); all treatments were superior to placebo (140 hours), said Dr. Gordon.

Compared with placebo, the hazard ratios (HR) for the ASP2151 regimens were 1.40 for both the 100 mg and 200 mg doses, 1.25 for the 400 mg dose, and 1.72 for the 1200 mg dose; for valacyclovir, the HR was 1.42.

There were no severe adverse reactions, and the most common adverse effects in the ASP2151 groups were nausea, dizziness, and headache.

Asked to comment on the findings, Maria Hordinsky, MD, who was on the selection committee for the late-breaking abstracts, told Medscape Medical News that there is a great interest in finding an alternative to antivaricella zoster virus therapies; the selection committee viewed many abstracts on this topic.

"We already have really good drugs — we have acyclovir and valacyclovir — so why do we need a helicase-primase inhibitor? It's all about new choices," said Dr. Hordinsky, who is professor and chair of the Department of Dermatology at the University of Minnesota Medical School in Minneapolis. "The main point here is that some people are developing resistance to the standard treatments, so you need new options."

Helicase-primase inhibitors circumvent the reliance that nucleoside analogues have on the phosphorylation of viral thymidine kinase, explained Dr. Gordon. "There do exist HSV strains that have dysfunctional thymidine kinase and are immune to oral nucleoside analogues."

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Genital Herpes in Men




Male genital herpes photo
 Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease made up of the herpes simplex virus (HSV), HSV-1 and HSV-2.The HSV-2 strain is by far the most common, as it is the variant passed on by sexual activity. HSV-1 is mainly passed orally and is the cause of cold sores. HSV-2 is the virus passed on by unprotected sexual contact.

Herpes is a very common virus, estimates state that at least one in six people carrying the HSV-2 form. In many cases, the virus is asymptomatic, meaning most people could easily be completely unaware they are carrying the infection.

Herpes symptoms in men are very similar to those of women, if symptoms do occur they can be quite sever to begin with. That means many people carrying the herpes virus will either be completely unaware, or very aware.

Symptoms of Genital Herpes in Men

Herpes symptoms in men include small blisters, pain when passing urine and flu-like symptoms. As mentioned, it’s quite possible to be infected with the herpes virus and not know it.
In those cases where no symptoms appear, the carrier will be completely unaware of their condition. This makes the virus easy to spread, which is why infection rates are so high.
In those that do display symptoms, they will appear one or two weeks after initial infection. Herpes symptoms in men should then last for around two to three weeks. There may be subsequent outbreaks which will generally be shorter and less serious.


Small Blisters


One of the initial herpes symptoms in men are clusters of small, fluid-filled blisters located around the genitals, anus and upper thigh area. These will burst after a day or two, leaving a painful sore in its place. These sores will develop a crust and are likely to remain for the period of symptoms.

Pain Passing Urine

Another prominent herpes symptom in men is pain passing urine over the open sores. If there are sores on the end of the penis, or around the skin underneath the foreskin, urine can cause pain as it passes over them.

Flu-like Symptoms

The most common herpes symptom in men is flu-like symptoms that seem impervious to flu treatments. These symptoms can include headaches, backache, fever, lack of energy and a general feeling of being unwell. These symptoms can last the entire period of symptoms of the virus.

The first episode of symptoms may be followed by recurring outbreaks. Typically, these follow-up episodes will be milder and shorter lived, gradually decreasing in frequency and severity. The sufferer may receive a warning before an outbreak called a prodrome.

The prodrome is a precursor to an outbreak and can include itching skin, pain, or a tingling sensation at the site of infection. The flu-like symptoms may also appear and can last anywhere between a couple of hours and a couple of days.

Genital Herpes Transmission and Treatment

Herpes is a sexually transmitted disease that is passed through skin contact. While transmission is mainly through contact with sores, it is possible to contract the virus from skin that appears clear. Herpes symptoms in men have been known to appear after contact with a partner who seems completely asymptomatic.
The reason this virus is so prevalent is that there is often no outward sign of infection. So unprotected sex transmits the disease freely.

Treatment of herpes in men mainly revolves around treating the virus. It cannot be cured. There are two stages of treatment for herpes symptoms in men. The first is an antiviral medication that suppresses the actual symptoms of an outbreak. These are obviously only useful is the person develops symptoms of an outbreak.
The second stage of treatment is a suppressive drug therapy to reduce the transmission to sexual partners. This is a daily course of drugs that has to be maintained to prevent transmission of the virus. The person with the virus has to practice safe sex from the period of infection onwards, but these drugs help prevent further accidental transmission.

During an outbreak, it can become painful, or at least uncomfortable. There are several things sufferers can do to ease those symptoms. Aspirin or paracetamol are both effective painkillers if there is pain present.
Washing any sores in a mixture of salt water can soothe them and dry them out quicker. Wearing loose clothes minimizes friction, which prevents sores hurting even more. Ice-packs are also useful when herpes symptoms in men are present.

Complications

As far as we know, there are no secondary complications to herpes. The main problem is the herpes symptoms in men when they appear. In many cases, they will be painful, annoying, irritating and possibly debilitating. It also means that the sufferer will need to practice safe sex for the rest of their life.
It is very easy to transmit herpes in-between outbreaks through contact with the skin, even when there are no sores present. During an outbreak, the sufferer is very infectious and should restrict their sexual activities accordingly.

Prevention

The prevention of herpes should always be the priority, although it’s often easier said than done. In cases where the infection is asymptomatic, it’s generally only diagnosed by accident as part of tests for something else. If there are no herpes symptoms in men, it’s unlikely that extra care will be taken to prevent transmission.

The prevention of herpes comes down to four common-sense things.
Don’t have skin-to-skin contact while symptoms of genital herpes are present in either partner.
Don’t kiss or have oral sex while symptoms of genital herpes are present in either partner.
Use condoms when having vaginal, oral or anal sex.
Don’t share sex toys. If they are shared, make sure they are thoroughly clean and cover them with a condom.
If only one partner is known to have herpes, a regimen of regular testing of the other should be undertaken to ensure transmission is being effectively prevented. The suppressive drugs should also assist in preventing transmission between partners.

Still have questions? Ask the Counselor Now.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

New Natural Alternative Significantly Reduces Herpes Outbreaks



H-Control is a new herbal based product from Organic Health Labs. A great alternative to antibiotics and less expensive. Ancient organic herbs, a unique natural immune-modulating complex, Lysine and over 25 other powerful ingredients make up this formulation.

Herpes affects a majority of Americans and genital Herpes (HSV-2) infects about 1 in 5 or about 60 million Americans1. It is this form of Herpes virus that gets most attention for obvious reasons. A far more potent and safe alternative to treating outbreaks can be found in an herbal-based natural products like H-Control by Organic Health Labs.

what does herpes look likeFor those suffering from painful outbreaks, H-Control provides Herpes relief and prevents sores. Keys to this formulation are found two main ingredients; Prunella vulgaris and EpiCor. However, there are over 20 assisting in this formulation.

Chinese medical researchers Chuen-lung Cheng and Hongxi Xu report in the "Asian Journal of Traditional Medicines." Extract of P. vulgaris has been successfully used to control herpes infections in clinical settings2.
The Research by Dr. Lee and colleagues presented during the 103rd General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology (2003). Dr. Lee said: "Given the high incidence of herpes infection and the emergence of acyclovir-resistant strains of herpes viruses, the Prunella lignin-carbohydrate complex may prove to be a useful new-anti-herpes drug."

Herpes is an opportunistic virus and only surfaces when the immune system is compromised. EpiCor is a recent scientific breakthrough and critical in the success of H-Control as it supports the immune system’s ability to fight disease. EpiCor’s immune boosting ability is enhanced by the addition of organic reishi and shitake mushrooms, well-known for their success in fighting viral infections.

People suffering from Herpes have a new nature remedy in the fight against breakouts. This is a far cry from the hazards of antibiotics, which flush the body of much needed benevolent bacteria.

Although Herpes solutions are available in health food stores, the stigma of purchasing a product designed for Herpes drives online sales.