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novagirl67

What Tests Do I Ask For?

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novagirl67

I have a doctor's appointment coming up and I want to ask her to give me the test for herpes. The last time, all she did was look down there and determined that herpes is what i have. But i want to know which type i have and if i really have it. so can someone please tell me what test i ask for specifically? :confused:

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NeedToKnow

The HerpeSelect is a common blood test that distinguishes the type. If you are having an outbreak when you see the doctor you can tell her you want a "swab test". I am not sure of the name of it other than that. Maybe someone else does. With the swab test the doctor collects fluid from the outbreak blisters and sends it to a lab to test.

You can print this reference guide for blood tests and take it with you:

http://www.ashastd.org/pdfs/blood_test.pdf

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novagirl67

Oh crap. So if i don't have an outbreak, then its pointless to have a swab test??? like, they won't be able to tell UNLESS i have an outbreak? will it show negative??

that'd be ridiculous considering many people don't have symptoms and are carrying around herpes isn't it???

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helied2me

That's correct novagirl, An outbreak must be present and the best chance to detect the virus is within 24-48 after it surfaces. False negatives happen frequently with swabs also, mainly because the outbreak is starting to heal. The virus is only on the surface for a short period of time before it retreats back into the nervous system. It is not present on the surface all the time which is why they don't take swabs if there is no outbreak.

Blood tests can detect antibodies any time from 3 weeks to 3-6 months or longer, this is why they recommend you test at 12-16 weeks. Needtoknow provided a list of the tests that are generally used but different labs use different tests.

Quest Diagnostics does use the HerpeSelect Elisa test which usually reports the numbers that you probably read about here. It is the IgG Type Specific Antibody test and the one you want to request if you choose this method of testing. Be sure to ask to be tested for both HSV1 and HSV2 so you know your status with both.

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