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Sexual health and LGBT population
Living with HIV
Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)
This infection is frequently divided into three stages.
Subsequent to the incubation period, a small non-painful papule (pimple) appears and evolves over several days into a superficial ulcer (open wound). In the majority of individuals infected this stage passes unnoticed given its rapid healing (and this, even without treatment).
2 – 4 weeks after the primary lesion has healed, LGV passes into the second stage of infeciton with the development of swollen inguinal (groin region) lymph nodes (the activity centers of your immune system). These lymph nodes (on the same side as the initial pimple and ulcer) become swollen and are generally quite painful. There is quite often an associated redness over the region of the swollen lymph nodes. At times, these nodes may actually open up to the outside of the skin and drain a creamy white pus. The second stage may also be accompanied by generalized symptoms including : fever, fatigue, headaches, nausea and vomiting and occasional limb pains (arms and legs).
If treatment is not initiated, these ulcerations or open sores can become badly scarred causing significant obstruction of the lymphatic vessels (the conduits that remove and transport excess body fluids). This latter complication can result in the disorder known as elephantiasis, wherein, extremely abnormal and excessive swelling of the genitals occurs. Generalized symptoms, similar to those described in the second stage can also occur in the third stage.