HSV1 and 2

Written by: Solaris Diagnostics


Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) can be categorized into two types, Herpes Simplex 1 (HSV-1), and Herpes Simplex 2 (HSV-2); both of which rarely exhibit symptoms and have limited treatment options, are becoming increasingly common pathogens. Initial infections occur in openings in the skin or mucus membranes. The virus continues to replicate, and spreads into the sensory neurons establishing a life-long latent infection inside the host. 

Reported by the CDC’s National Center of Health Statistics (2018), persons aged 14-49 had a prevalence of HSV-1 (47.8%) and HSV-2 (11.9%), with an increased linear trend with age, and a higher risk of transmission to women from men. HSV-1 causes infections in and around the mouth, known as ‘cold sores’ or ‘fever blisters’, by means of oral-to-oral transmission. HSV-2 typically causes genital infections from oral-genital transmissions via genital secretions. 

At the site of infection, painful lesions can form that resemble blisters. This type of occurrence is referred to as an ‘outbreak’. An outbreak may be accompanied with flu-like symptoms as well as painful burning or itching. However, most herpes infections are asymptomatic and those infected may spread the infection without knowing. In 2016, the World Health Organization acknowledged HSV as an ongoing endemic issue. 

Solaris Diagnostics uses the gold standard PCR test for HSV testing. The presence of the pathogen can be detected by utilizing real-time Polymerase Chain Reaction (qPCR) with high accuracy and specificity. These targets are included in our Women’s Health panel or can be ordered as a stand-alone diagnostic test. Services will provide rapid detection with a turnaround time (TAT) of 24 hours.

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