4 doctors weighed in:
What precautions are required for health care workers when treating patients with herpes encephalitis?
4 doctors weighed in

Dr. Robert Kwok
Pediatrics
2 doctors agree
In brief: Contact precautions
Use contact precautions, as herpes simplex is contagious mainly by contact with an infected person's sores.
A never-infected person, without protective antibodies, could catch herpes from a patient with herpes encephalitis, but he would likely just get a typical herpes infection and future recurrences of sores. It is very unlikely that he would get encephalitis, because encephalitis is quite rare.

In brief: Contact precautions
Use contact precautions, as herpes simplex is contagious mainly by contact with an infected person's sores.
A never-infected person, without protective antibodies, could catch herpes from a patient with herpes encephalitis, but he would likely just get a typical herpes infection and future recurrences of sores. It is very unlikely that he would get encephalitis, because encephalitis is quite rare.
Dr. Robert Kwok
Dr. Robert Kwok
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1 comment
Dr. Michael DePietro
It is common to confuse The virus that causes herpes encephalitis with another herpes virus ( herpes zoster) which causes Shingles and does produce skin lesions that can transmit the virus, but does not normally produce encephalitis in a normal host
Dr. Michael DePietro
Internal Medicine - Pulmonary Critical Care
1 doctor agrees
In brief: None
Herpes encephalitis is caused by herpes simplex virus which is the virus that causes cold sores.
Once infected with this virus the virus will live forever in one of the nerves to the face. The virus at times reactivates and causes a cold sore. Rarely the virus reactivates and migrates to the brain causing encephalitis. Most people in the US are already infected with this virus ( 57%).

In brief: None
Herpes encephalitis is caused by herpes simplex virus which is the virus that causes cold sores.
Once infected with this virus the virus will live forever in one of the nerves to the face. The virus at times reactivates and causes a cold sore. Rarely the virus reactivates and migrates to the brain causing encephalitis. Most people in the US are already infected with this virus ( 57%).
Dr. Michael DePietro
Dr. Michael DePietro
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