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What happens during a viral culture test for herpes?

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For this test for genital herpes, your doctor scrapes or swabs one of your sores to take a sample. A lab then checks the sample for the herpes virus. It can take up to 7 days to get your results.

This test is best used within 48 hours of when you first see symptoms. After that time, the level of herpes virus starts to drop. That means there’s a higher chance the test could say you don’t have herpes when you really do.

From: Herpes Test: What You Should Know WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

CDC: “Genital Herpes -- CDC Fact Sheet.”

Mayo Clinic: “Diseases and Conditions -- Genital Herpes.”

Center for Young Women’s Health: “Herpes.”

Lab Tests Online: “Herpes Testing.”

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force: “Screening for Genital Herpes Simplex: Brief Update for the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.”

American Sexual Health Association: “Herpes Blood Test Reference Guide.”

Reviewed by Louise Chang on August 04, 2018

SOURCES:

CDC: “Genital Herpes -- CDC Fact Sheet.”

Mayo Clinic: “Diseases and Conditions -- Genital Herpes.”

Center for Young Women’s Health: “Herpes.”

Lab Tests Online: “Herpes Testing.”

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force: “Screening for Genital Herpes Simplex: Brief Update for the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.”

American Sexual Health Association: “Herpes Blood Test Reference Guide.”

Reviewed by Louise Chang on August 04, 2018

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What happens during a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for herpes?

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