Infections of Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) most often cause blister-like sores or blemishes on the skin that eventually crust over in scabs before healing. Two serological subtypes of HSV have been described: HSV-1 and HSV-2. HSV-1 is primarily associated with infection in the tongue, mouth, lips, pharynx and eyes; whereas HSV-2 is primarily associated with genital and neonatal infection. However, either type can cause genital infections, and HSV-1 is increasingly recognized as a cause of genital symptoms. Genital herpes is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases. This is an important cause of morbidity and mortality. HSV (1+2) IgG assays are used for diagnostic assessment of prior infection with HSV-1 and/or HSV-2. HSV IgG type specific assays will help to select appropriate treatment and improve patient follow-up, but also to avoid undiagnosed HSV-2 infection in pregnant women and better monitor at risk pregnancies. HSV (1+2) IgM assays are indicated for the detection of early or recent and neonatal infections and the diagnosis of encephalitis caused by HSV.
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