LAST EDITED ON Jan-04-12 AT 11:03 AM (CDST)
HSV is not one sided. The virus attacks the sensory portion of the nerve which can serve several main nerves that innervate the pubic region. One of those main nerves is the pudendal nerve ~
The main symptom of pudendal neuralgia (PN) and pudendal nerve entrapment (PNE) is pain in one or more of the areas innervated by the pudendal nerve or one of its branches. These areas include the rectum, anus, urethra, perineum, and genital area. In women this includes the clitoris, mons pubis, vulva, lower 1/3 of the vagina, and labia. In men this includes the penis and scrotum. But often pain is referred to nearby areas in the pelvis. The symptoms can start suddenly or develop slowly over time. Typically pain gets worse as the day progresses and is worse with sitting. The pain can be on one or both sides and in any of the areas innervated by the pudendal nerve, depending on which nerve fibers and which nerve branches are affected. The skin in these areas may be hypersensitive to touch or pressure (hyperesthesia or allodynia).
Possible symptoms include burning, numbness, increased sensitivity, electric shock or stabbing pain, knife-like or aching pain, feeling of a lump or foreign body in the vagina or rectum, twisting or pinching, abnormal temperature sensations, constipation, pain and straining with bowel movements, straining or burning when urinating, painful intercourse, and sexual dysfunction – including uncomfortable arousal or the opposite problem, decreased sensation.
It is not uncommon for PN to be accompanied by musculoskeletal pain in other parts of the pelvis such as the sacroiliac joint, piriformis muscle, or coccyx. It is usually very difficult to distinguish between PN and pelvic floor dysfunction because they are frequently seen together. Some people refer to this condition as pelvic myoneuropathy which suggests both a neural and muscular component involving tense muscles in the pelvic floor.
Pudendal neuralgia can be caused by inflammation of the nerve or by mechanical damage/trauma to the nerve, (ie contracting a disease that attacks the sensory portion of nerves that reside in the sensory nerve ganglia at the base of your spine). Sometimes the pain develops slowly and is almost imperceptible at first, sometimes preceded by paresthesia in the area innervated by the pudendal nerve. Paresthesia is a “pins and needles” sensation or a feeling of prickling, numbness, and tingling.
As my outbreaks have gotten better over the course of four years - and it pretty much took that long - my post herpetic neuralgia has gotten better as well. My pain has been all over my pelvic area much worse in the beginning traveling down the back of my butt and both legs. It's not perfect today but a hell of a lot better and I can function w/o the pain absorbing my every waking thought.
I did speak with a man who had severe pain in his leg and foot and he felt it was herpetic related. From my research the medical community is not clear on how or why the virus severely impairs the functioning of nerves. The article Herpes Never Sleeps seems to shed some light on the continual replication of the virus and why some of us have suffered debilitating pain.