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Can HSV 1 & 2 cause HEADACHE?

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Hello there ...

I am a 21 year old male . Diagnosed with HSV-1 and HSV-2 about 8 months ago . This is my only medical history . Otherwise healthy . My concern is I recently seen my ophthalmologist due to both eyes being red and having a severe Headache . I have never had this problem with my eyes or any head pains . Is herpes related ? I am very concerned and have had severe Headaches for the last 3 weeks with blurry vision . What should I do ? Thank you so much for reading !!

Category: Sexually Transmitted Diseases(STD)Specialist

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Category: HIV- AIDS Specialist
 18 Doctors Online

Thank you for your query at

I understand your concern.
It is unlikely to be related. Among the two types of Herpes Simplex viruses, HSV-1 can cause infections of the eye but in that case only one eye is usually affected. Since both of your eyes are affected, I do not think your present symptoms are related to Herpes.

I would like to know more details about your current symptoms in order to help you better.
1. Which was the first symptom, headache or the red eyes?
2. Do you have any itching in the eyes? Any excessive tearing? Is the blurry vision present only during the headache or always present?
3. What was the opthalmologist's opinion on the red eyes?
4. Please describe the headache in detail, including the side affected (right, left, or the entire head); character of pain (throbbing, stabbing, band-like etc); any preceding aura like zigzag lines, flashes of light etc?
5. How long does each episode of headache last? Any aggravating or relieving factors?
6. Any associated nausea or vomiting?
7. Any history of allergies or any other medical condition?
Please reply to each of the above questions in the follow-up.

Awaiting your response,
Thank you.

Patient replied :

No medical history except hsv. First symptom was red eyes . I went to the doctor and told me I had a slight case of uveitis I was prescribed prensolone eye drops . The redness was gone after about a week and the hedaches keep coming back . No itching of eyes and I have sensitivy to lights . The blurry vision is only when I have the hedache . I usually have the hedache in the morning when I wake up and by the early evening I am fatigued and have no choice to close my eyes because I have a hedache and eye pain . The hedache usually occurs just under my right ear and on both sides of the temple area . I have no history of tension hedaches or migraines . From the hsv diagnoses can this be a factor of Encephalitis? I am not the doctor here but from the symptoms you make the best judgment . In addition I am waiting waiting on blood work that was done 48 hours ago ESR,PPD, blood count , arthritis VRDL etc ...

Thank you for your response.

No, your headaches or other symptoms in no way indicate encephalitis. In encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) a headache may or may not be present but abnormalities in brain function are expected, including altered mental status (such as confusion, disorientation, loss of consciousness etc), altered behavior and personality changes, difficulty in speech, muscle weakness or paralysis, numbness etc.

The type of headache you have seems to be a combination of tension headache and migraine-like headache. This can be present even in the absence of a prior history. You can take an OTC like Ibuprofen 400 mg, once, after a meal, for relief. If this is not effective, you may require prescription strength analgesics like Naproxen.

Uveitis (inflammation of middle-inner eye) may result from many causes raging from infections, autoimmune diseases, drug-induced inflammation etc. The blood work has been done in order to determine the cause.
Once the the results are available, please follow up with your Ophthalmologist. You can even upload them here for interpretation.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if I can assist you further.

Thank you.

Patient replied :

Hello ,
I continue to have red eye in the right eye only , It is itchy at times . No hedache lately just waking up in the morning with one eye red what can this be ? I attached some photos

Thank you for the follow up.
From the picture that you have sent it looks more like an allergic manifestation.
I will advise you an eye drop which will relieve minor amonts of irritation and hence clear the redness of eyes.
You can use Advance Eye Relief drops ( Naphazoline hydrocholoride + Polyethylene glycol ) 2-3 times daily, 1-2 drops in the affected eye. In case that particular drop is not available any locally available drop with the above mentioned ingredients, can be used for relief.
Use the drops for 2-3 days and let me know as a follow up about any improvement.

Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy
Category: HIV- AIDS Specialist
MBBS from Sri Ramachandra University in December 2011
M.Med (Family Medicine) - TNMGR University, Chennai
MBA-MPH in Public Health in March 2016, SRM University
Finished AFIH in March 2016, SRM University
MRCP ( UK ), Internal Medicine, Royal College of Physicians, June 2016
Fellowship in Diabetology from Martin Luther University in January 2017

Currently Resident Physician, in MD Radiodiagnosis - Kamakshi Memorial Hospital, Chennai
Dr. Jaydeep Tripathy and 4 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you

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