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As one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases, genital herpes is a global medical problem with significant physical and psychological morbidity. Genital herpes is caused by herpes simplex virus type 1 or type 2 and can manifest as primary and/or recurrent infection. This manuscript provides an overview about the fundamental knowledge on the virus, its epidemiology, and infection. Furthermore, the current possibilities of antiviral therapeutic interventions and laboratory diagnosis of genital herpes as well as the present situation and perspectives for the treatment by novel antivirals and prevention of disease by vaccination are presented. Since the medical management of patients with genital herpes simplex virus infection is often unsatisfactory, this review aims at all physicians and health professionals who are involved in the care of patients with genital herpes. The information provided would help to improve the counseling of affected patients and to optimize the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of this particular disease.