Genital Herpes Test

Unlike Oral Herpes which is caused by Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV I), Genital HerpesĀ is caused by the Herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV II) which normally affects the genitals.

One can only be sure of having genital herpes if they undergo the checkups on having or possessing the feel of sign and symptoms. One can also have genital herpes if their respective partner or partners have had some outbreaks.

It is relatively possible to have one or more sexually transmitted infectious diseases at one same time. There will be a need for having a checkup for a genital herpes infection if:

  • The patient or the partner think that they have the symptomatology related of herpes or as a matter of fact any infectious or sexual diseases
  • The patient has had unprotected sex with any new partner(s) in the recent times
  • If the sexual partner tells that they have herpes or any other kind of a sexually transmitted disease or a sexually transmitted infection
  • If the person has a sexually transmitted infection
  • The patient is pregnant or plans on a pregnancy

The presence of genital herpes indicates an increased risk of becoming infected to the HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) if there is an intercourse with a. HIV positive partner or by passing it on if there is already HIV infection in the person.

How soon after the intercourse must one go through the checkup?

One can go for a checkup if there are any of the symptoms or any of the signs related to herpes or any such sexually transmitted infections. There are no such routine tests for genital herpes if one does not have symptoms that are new or some new signs. The tests should be done as a precaution towards self-awareness and being and remaining healthy. Any such indication that points towards herpes or in any such direction shall be taken care of with utmost importance and care.

What does the genital herpes checkup consist of?

In many cases and not the majority as some of the people say, the doctor or the nurse can diagnose the case of genital herpes by looking at the infected skin or the area of infection which is showed by the patient. There might still be a need to confirm the presence of the infection so for that a swab of the fluid is being taken from the area infected, given a possibility. There can be a possibility to break a blister while taking a swab from the infected area of the fluid inside the blister. The swab is the subsequently sent to the laboratory for further examinations, and the results are usually given within 2 to 3 weeks of submission thereby confirming the presence of genital herpes or not.

The accuracy of the tests

The tests are not 100% accurate. It can also be formulated in some or the other way that no tests have a 100% accuracy rate. It is an easy process to recognize the presence of genital herpes in the beginning of an outbreak when there is a possibility of taking a sample fluid from the infected area or from a blister or from a sore before the healing process takes its due course.

The accurate diagnosis usually depends upon the time and the amount of virus that has been or will be shed at that time; the stage of the presence of blisters at the sore and further and the last, the kind of test done on the swab in order to determine the genital herpes. The doctor and (or) the nurse usually talk to the patient about the test on beginning and at the end of the test regarding the accuracy of the test and its subsequent results.

Where can be the checkup done?

There are a large number of given services for the test of genital herpes. One should choose the services with which he or she feels the most comfortable. Normally a genital herpes test can be done at:

  • A clinic with genitourinary medicine facilities or a sexual health clinic
  • A few clinics with contraception facilities and the ones with the young people service
  • A general practice in which the doctor or the nurse usually does the test for the patient

In all the cases above, the precautions are taken duly so that there is no risk of further infection.

Will the person know for how long they have had the virus?

If there was more than one sexual partner, then it can be difficult to now from which partner the herpes infection was transmitted to the patient. Unfortunately, the test for genital herpes cannot tell the person or the partner, from whom the infection has been obtained and also the duration of the infection in the patient.

The patients are advised to talk to their partners if there is any problem regarding the transmission of herpes as it is a serious issue. One should not be discouraged to discuss about the infection openly in front of the staff or the doctor or any of the support groups. The doctor or the nurse usually talks to the patient about the reasons of telling or not telling the partners about the infection as it is also a matter of confidentiality.