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Ask Dr. Norm S. Your Own Question
Dr. Norm S.
Dr. Norm S., Board Certified OB/GYN
Category: OB GYN
Satisfied Customers: 11058
Experience:  Over 30 years of experience in OB/GYN practice, including teaching students. Fellow of American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
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How does the HSV1 or HSV2 virus "shed" from an

Customer Question

How does the HSV1 or HSV2 virus "shed" from an infection sight on the torso of a child? The sight appears as a birthmark year-round, with small, infrequent pimples. Is it always contagious? Some time more than others? Is that a possible infection sight if passed from mother to baby during pregnancy or delivery?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: OB GYN
Expert:  Dr. Norm S. replied 11 months ago.

Has there been a herpes culture taken from this site while there were pimples there? Thank you.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
The child has been seen continuously by a dermatologist since infancy based on the ever-present mark. The infrequent pimples have been examined and (I believe) tested. I do not know the results.
Expert:  Dr. Norm S. replied 11 months ago.

HSV1 and HSV2 both shed and are contagious mostly when there lesions present. The way to know whether a lesion (sore, rash, etc.) is from herpes and contagious is to do a herpes culture from the area.

HSV 1 and 2 can also shed and be contagious at other times, but it's far less likely.

A birthmark probably has no relationship to HSV 1 or 2. Any lesion from herpes will come and go, usually lasting one week or less.

It would be quite unusual for a baby to get herpes lesions that were recurrent on the skin from contact at delivery. Herpes is not thought to spread from mother to fetus while protected inside the uterus.

If your baby tested positive for herpes, I'm pretty sure the doctor would have informed you of this.

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