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What Is a Cold Sore?

A cold sore is a group of small blisters filled with fluid found in, on, or around your mouth and lips. As the blisters break open, a crust will form over the affected patch of skin. If left untreated, a cold sore will heal over time and will not leave a scar. Cold sores are an outbreak that is caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV). Though HSV-1 is the most common cause of cold sores, HSV-2 can also be responsible.


If you have herpes (HSV-1 or HSV-2), antiviral medication can be used to control outbreaks and to help prevent sexual partners from contracting the infection. Keep in mind that herpes can still be contracted when there are no signs of infection, such as an outbreak. HSV-1 is extremely hard to prevent since most Americans by the age of 20 have the virus, but using condoms when having sex can help prevent HSV-2. Contact your Nurx™ medical provider for more information.

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