DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Cold sores & cracked lips. The cracked lips and cold sores seen around the mouth of a 6 year-old girl infected by the Herpes simplex virus. This is a common infection characterised by the appear- ance of small fluid-filled blisters. It is contagious and usually spread by direct contact with the blisters or the fluid they contain. Herpes simplex virus exists in two forms known as HSV1 and HSV2. HSV1 is usually associated with infections of the lips, mouth and face whereas HSV2 with infections of the genitals. Herpes simplex is treated with antiviral drugs such as acyclovir. Antibiotic drugs are used if the sores become infected with bacteria.
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