Both herpes simplex virus (HSV) type I and HSV type 2 can cause genital herpes. Because the infection is chronic, genital herpes has become the most common sexually transmitted disease among women. The prevalence of the HSV-2 antibody among women in the United States is 26%, although genital herpes has been diagnosed in only a small proportion (10-25%) of individuals with HSV-2 antibodies. Herpes simplex virus type I is becoming a more frequent cause of genital herpes, especially among young women. Overall,HSV-I seroprevalence in the United States is estimated at 67%, although sero-logic data do not provide information about site of infection. Recent advances in diagnostic methods and therapeutic options are likely to change the management of genital herpes.