Herpes is a common virus, also called the herpes simplex infection. The virus lies “latent” in your body after your first infection, the primary infection. The latent virus typically blossoms in conjunction with a cold, stress, fatigue or an infection. Symptoms include itching or a burning sensation. The virus can appear on your lips or in your genital area, causing blisters or small wounds in your vagina or labia. Some women have more frequent outbreaks when they are pregnant. If you have a herpes outbreak at the end of your pregnancy, or if you experience any of these symptoms you should be evaluated by your healthcare provider. Symptoms are treated with medicine prescribed by a physician. Most women with known history of herpes simplex infection are advised to start antiviral medications at week 36. This helps prevent any potential outbreak during delivery.
In rare cases, a cesarean section may be scheduled if you have a severe case of herpes infection in your genital region when it is time for you to give birth in order to prevent the baby from becoming infected at birth.