Feb 23, 2010
Since reading a lot of post from Canadians confused about HSV testing in Canada and getting nowhere I decided to clear some things up.
Herpes (HSV 1 and 2) IgM and IgG blood testing IS available in Canada. Blood tests were aproved by Health Canada either in 2006 or 2007.
It is done by private or public labs.
Private lab doing testing is done by “Gamma-Dynacare”. Their lab uses the “Herpe Select” Immunoblot test for HSV. It does both Igm/IgG testing if required. This test is NOT covered by Public Health Plan - Cost is 140$ Lab is based in Montreal. The turn around time is 1-2 weeks.
The test by Immunoblot HSV1 is 92%-100% accurate.
The test by Immunoblot HSV2 is 98%-100% accurate.
Public Health (in Ontario at least) does IgG HSV ELISA/EIA testing. It is free but only if your referring doctor or the lab where the blood is drawn requests Public Health to do the actual testing. The test in NOT type specific ie. It will not differentiate between type 1 or 2, the public lab does not do type specific testing at all! If you want type specific (HSV 1 or 2 ) you must go through the private lab. The turn around time is 1-2 weeks.
Public Health Toronto Lab does the blood testing.
Public Health Kingston does the lesion swab testing.
Toronto Virology lab # 1-416-235-5731.
Kingston lab # 1-613-548-6638
Local (519) 679-1630
Local (613) 729-0200
Local (905) 790-3030
All this information is 100% accurate. I contacted both Gamma-Dynacare and Public Health multiple times to make sure my information was correct. The private lab has a web page for HSV testing information:
Look for HERPES SIMPLEX IGM/IGG testing.
Note: Most doctors in Canada unfortunately are not aware that blood testing is available, they can refuse you if you ask or tell you that it is inaccurate or difficult to do. Some will only test IF you have actual active lesion present. DO not take NO for an answer. Search for a different doctor if possible. Walk in clinics are notorious for refusing to do blood testing and most city STD clinics do not do HSV testing. For info on any particular province and where testing is done please call the Gamma or Public Health numbers and they should be able to help you out.
Any further info, questions comments please PM me by all means.