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Difference Between Jock Itch and Herpes

Jock Itch vs Herpes

People sometimes who are not aware of illnesses and disease, particularly non-health care professionals, are the ones often contracting diseases that are either debilitating in the long term or not so nice to have in the short term.

Examples of these are jock itch and herpes. Jock itch is caused by a fungal infection called Trichophyton rubrum while herpes is caused by the herpes simplex virus. Jock itch is also known as tinea cruris. It has other names such as crotch itch, crotch rot, eczema marginatum, ringworm of the groin, and gym itch. It occurs on both sexes; however, it is more common in males. Herpes is also known as herpes simplex which can be either Herplex Simplex Virus type 1 (HSV-1) or Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2 (HSV-2).

Jock itch can also be caused by a fungus called tinea pedis or athlete’s foot. It can also be due to wearing tight clothing such as a jock strap which causes sweating in which fungus can live and spread. Opportunistic infections can also cause jock itch. Other fungi which cause jock itch are Epidermophyton floccosum, Trichophyton mentagrophytes and Candida albicans.

Herpes, on the other hand, is caused by a virus and can be classified either as HSV-1 or HSV-2. If it’s HSV-1, the virus resides on the eyes, throat, mouth and the central nervous system which may cause Bell’s palsy or Herpesviral Encephalitis in the brain. HSV-2 primarily affects the genital organs and anus.

Diagnosis of jock itch depends on the physician particularly a dermatologist. While for herpes, it can also be a dermatologist or internal medicine. In jock itch, it usually presents itself as a reddish rash which is typically itchy and burning in sensation. In herpes, it usually presents blisters which are reddish and papule-like for HSV-1. However in HSV-2, it is difficult to diagnose because they don’t have classical symptoms. A diagnostic test such as lab exams confirm HSV-2 illness. Herpes can be contracted via skin to skin or through secretions. It is common among prostitutes and promiscuous individuals.

Treatment of jock itch is via cream particularly anti-fungal medications. Reduction of herpes relies on medicines particularly anti-viral meds such as acyclovir. There are no treatments available. Vaccines are currently developed for herpes to prevent, minimize, and also to treat the infection. The use of condoms may prevent herpes.


1.Jock itch is caused by a fungus while herpes is caused by a virus.

2.Jock itch can be treated while herpes can only be minimized.

3.Jock itch can be caused by wearing tight clothing which enables sweating while herpes is caused by skin-to-skin contact or through body fluids in which there is a chance that the virus can penetrate.

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1 Comment

  1. Been depressed for about a year now because I could not accept the fact that I have herpes type 1 and been very ashamed to open this up with my own family. Valtrex is the only meds I have right now. Anyway, very insightful information. Thanks.

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