Oral Herpes Test

This is caused due to the Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV I) which normally has its effects on the mouth area and the oral cavity. One can be sure of having oral herpes if and only they undergo the tests and the checkups on having the feel of the signs and symptoms of the presence of blisters or itching. Eating from the same plate or kissing or any of the oral sexual activities can lead to infection of this virus. It is also affected by the children from the affected adults and then they carry it with them for the rest of their lives. It is relatively a possibility to have one or more sexual infectious diseases at one same time. There is a need of checkup for oral herpes (HSV I) 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 oral sex with any new partner(s) in the recent times and had involved measures of kissing
  • If the sexual partner tells that they have herpes or any other kind of a sexually transmitted disease or a sexually transmitted infection
  • The patient has friends suffering from the infection, and they are too close to sharing their food habits such as sharing from the same plate or drinking from the same glass of water
  • If the person has a sexually transmitted infection
  • The patient is pregnant or plans on a pregnancy

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

One needs a checkup if there are any symptoms or signs related to herpes. There are no such routine tests for oral herpes if there is no presence of symptoms that are relatively new or presence of some new signs. The tests that are being done as a precaution or self-awareness and good health. Any such indication pointing towards herpes should be taken care of with great importance and care.

What does the genital herpes checkup consist of?

A doctor normally bases a diagnosis presumptive on the information that is provided by the patient to him or her and on the basis of the physical examination. The characteristic appearance of the sores in relation to the infection leaves doubt that is little about the further diagnosis. This appearance helps to diagnose the disease and distinguish it from other infections/diseases such as gonorrhea, syphilis or oral thrush. Also, chapped, sunburnt lips might show a striking resemblance to oral herpes, but normally the tissue strain determines the presence of the infection by showing no virus induced changes in the cell. The testing further is not done and is usually not necessary but depending upon the conditions it is usually done.

If there is a need for the definitive diagnosis then there is a need for the laboratory tests to be done and the doctor takes his/her pleasure in performing the tests with utmost care and protection just in case there is a risk of infecting the other organs or the systems.

A sample of the tissue or the fluid is taken from the sores to identify the presence if the HSV I virus.

A viral culture analysis is needed to determine further presence. A staining test is performed which is called the Tzanck smear test that shows the nonspecific changes in the nucleus due to the presence of HSV.

Some antigen and antibody tests can also be done (some serologic and PCR tests) to determine the infection’s cause to be HSV 1 or HSV 2.

The accuracy of the tests

None of the tests is 100 % accurate, but the presence of the infection can be determined at an early outbreak. It is the major cause of the widespread as the infection is sometimes judged to be a normal blister or sunburn of chapped lips are considered to be a result of dehydration. The tests are not accurate so if there were more sexual partners involved in the acts then is also tough to determine the one who transmitted the infection to the patient.

The tests are done on the basis of the swab taken from the infected area. Therefore, there is a high dependence on the:

  • Density of the fluid taken from the infected area
  • Density of the tissue taken from the infected area
  • The dryness of the sore or how wet the sore is
  • The age i.e. the time of the outbreak of the sore or the area of infection
  • The amount of the tissue of the fluid on the swab taken from the area of the infection

Usually, the nurse or the doctor discusses the outcomes of the test or the infection at the beginning of the tests and the end as well. It is also advised to discuss this with the partner of the patient and also with the nursing staff or the persons concerned as well.