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Herpes and shingles are two different diseases, each with its unique set of symptoms. Although they are both considered contagious and may appear to be similar, they are not caused by the same virus or transmitted in the same manner. Both infections require proper diagnosis by an experienced medical professional to ensure the correct treatment is provided to alleviate symptoms.
Dr. Behroozan and his team of professional, board-certified dermatologists at Dermatology Institute Southern California are dedicated to finding the root of your discomfort so that you can clear the symptoms of infection as quickly and effectively as possible. We understand that both herpes and shingles can cause unnecessary stress and irritation, and we are here to guide your return to your normal lifestyle under the most pristine care. Patients in the Los Angeles area will find both our Santa Monica and Beverly Hills offices conveniently located.
Herpes, also referred to as oral and/or genital herpes, is a virus that is transmitted by skin-to-skin contact. Herpes manifests as sores at the area where the infection entered the body (most typically around the sexual organs or mouth). Signs and symptoms can vary greatly from person to person, but generally involve pain or itching at the infection site, small red bumps or white blisters, ulcers, and/or scabs. Symptoms of herpes can also remain mild or dormant for the duration of the infection, which leads to the high transmission rates associated with this virus. Although there is no cure for the long-term infection, our team of dermatologists and highly experienced skin specialists can help you manage and suppress the virus with medications.
Upon your visit to either our Santa Monica or Beverly Hills office, our dermatologists will administer a physical examination to determine whether you have herpes or shingles. Typically laboratory or blood tests are not needed for diagnosis, though they are available should further testing be necessary. Usually one of two antiviral medications, Acyclovir (a topical cream) or Valtrex (taken orally), is prescribed to lessen your symptoms and give you relief from the painful blisters or other symptoms you may experience. Neither medication will “cure” the infection, but will rather calm the affected region and may speed up the recovery process so that you can return to your normal quality of life. If you suffer from recurrent herpes infections, a long-term course of anti-virals may be prescribed to suppress the virus.
With two convenient locations in Santa Monica and Beverly Hills, the dermatologists of the Dermatology Institute Southern California are accessible from all parts of Los Angeles. Our team of dermatologists are experts in all matters of skincare, and we are constantly staying up to date on the latest advances so as to best serve our patients’ interests. As always, we encourage you to come to us with any and all questions and are more than happy to walk you through what to expect from either herpes or shingles, from diagnosis to follow-up. Schedule your consultation today.