Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Your doctor usually can diagnose genital herpes based on a physical exam and the results of certain laboratory tests:

  • Viral culture. This test involves taking a tissue sample or scraping of the sores for examination in the laboratory.
  • Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. PCR is used to copy your DNA from a sample of your blood, tissue from a sore or spinal fluid. The DNA can then be tested to establish the presence of HSV and determine which type of HSV you have.
  • Blood test. This test analyzes a sample of your blood for the presence of HSV antibodies to detect a past herpes infection.
May. 21, 2014

You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic

Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.