Who gets Genital Herpes?

About one-fifth of all people aged 12 and up in the U.S. are infected with the HSV-2 virus that causes genital herpes, but as many as 90% don't know it. Experts estimate 55% to 75% of adults have oral herpes. Undergoing herpes testing is just plain smart considering the prevalence of this condition.

How is Genital Herpes diagnosed?

Genital herpes can be difficult to diagnose, though there are a few different methods:

  • Physical Exam. Your doctor may be able to tell by looking at your sores
  • Swab. If possible, the doctor will swab your sore to study the fluid
  • Blood Test. This is the most certain method of diagnosis - blood is drawn and tested for HSV-1 and HSV-2

What test do you recommend?

HSV Types 1 and 2 - IgG

This test is an antibody test for the Herpes Simplex Virus. This test is type specific, but it is impossible to conclusively state where any particular infection is located on the body, absent of any symptoms. It is also impossible to determine how long the virus has been present in the body.

HSV Types 1 and 2 - IgM

This particular test is not type specific. It can only determine whether or not the antibodies that are typically produced shortly after the initial contact with HSV are present. These antibodies begin to appear approximately one week after the virus is contracted.

Get tested for Genital Herpes (HSV-2)

Genital herpes does not generally cause other problems. However, it does increase your risk of contracting other STDs including HIV. Act immediately and get tested today!

Get tested for STDs today
Mark Riegel, MD
Mark Riegel, MD

Do I Have Genital Herpes?

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Genital Herpes Symptom Checker