Current Infectious Disease Reports

, Volume 11, Issue 6, pp 449-456

First online:

Genitourinary manifestations of Epstein-Barr virus infections

  • Randi Leigh
  • , Paul NyirjesyAffiliated withDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Drexel University College of Medicine Email author 

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Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is best known as the organism responsible for the syndrome of acute infectious mononucleosis. Transmission of EBV most commonly occurs through oral secretions. EBV has also been isolated from the female genital tract, where its role is poorly understood. This article reviews the available literature and data regarding EBV in the female genital tract and discusses areas of consensus and controversy. The primary manifestation of EBV seems to be vulvar ulcers, which are underrecognized. Diagnosis relies on appropriate serologic testing. Management includes local care and may require pain and corticosteroid medications. Although EBV is present elsewhere in the female genital tract, its pathogenic role in the cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries is poorly understood.