Q. Does a cold sore indicate cervical cancer?

Answered by
Dr. Zubayeralam
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 11, 2021

Hi doctor,

Can a cold sore virus cause cervical cancer? I never had sex before, but I have caught a cold sore from one of my friend's children who drank after me. I am worried. Please help.



Welcome to

Thanks for the query. I can understand your concern. Most of the cold sores are caused by herpes simplex virus type1 (HSV-1) that usually occur on lips and usually not transmitted by sexual contact. Another type of cold sores are caused by herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2). HSV-1 usually does not cause cervical cancer, but women with HSV-2 are more prone to develop cervical cancer. All women are at risk of developing cervical cancer. Among them, those who have HSV-2 associated cold sores or other infections for a long time are more vulnerable to develop cervical cancer than women without HSV-2 associated infections. The initial symptom of cervical cancer is abnormal bleeding, abnormal vaginal bleeding during intercourse, between periods, or after menopause. Menstrual periods may be found heavier and prolonged. Pain during intercourse, vaginal discharge, or foul odor also may be associated with cervical cancer. Taking proper care of your cold sores will help you to prevent any complications in the near future. Take care and let me know if I can assist you further.

Hi doctor,

Thanks for the reply.

Will I get the cold sore that most little kids get? That is how I got it from one of my friend's children drinking after me. Is that the same type that causes cervical cancer? Please explain.



Welcome back to

As you have mentioned, I have understood how you got the cold sore. As mentioned earlier, a cold sore is usually caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), but herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) may also cause a cold sore. Cold sores that HSV-2 causes may cause cervical cancer. Women with HSV-2 may be prone to develop cervical cancer in the long run. So, you can confirm the causative agent of your cold sore by a biopsy, whether HSV-1 or HSV-2 caused it, and then treat it accordingly. Women with HSV-2 are vulnerable to develop cervical cancer. Take care. In case of any other query, knock me.

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