This forum is an un-mediated, patient-to-patient forum for questions and support regarding herpes issues such as: Herpes symptoms and treatments, causes, diagnosis, and herpes in men, tests, telling your spouse or partner.
I'm just curious as to how accurate PCR swab tests are? my GP says that it is easier to diagnose a herpes infection either genital or oral using swabs on a sore. If I had a blister/sore/ulcer looking thing that has a clear liquidy surface would that suffice for a PCR swab? how long does it have to be done after the sore bursts open or becomes a blister/sore/ulcer for it to be a valid result?
If the GP was able to get liquid from the sores surface onto the cottonbud end would that be sufficient regardless of time passed?
Your GP is right about swabbing a blister being the best way to diagnose HSV. A "positive" swab is conclusive. Unlike blood-testing, where a positive value (IgG) of between 1.1 - 3.5 is actually a negative reading 50% of the time, assuming that the testing was taken 3-4 months after the last possible exposure to the virus.
The experts I have followed on this recommend getting swabbed within 48 hours of the appearance of a blister for accurate swab results. Getting liquied may be sufficient for testing purposes; but, I have yet to read anyone saying that specifically.
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