Print this page    •   Back to Web version of article

Medical News
Seroprevalence and Risk Factors for Herpes Simplex Virus Infection in a Population of HIV-Infected Patients in Canada

May 18, 2009

The researchers in the current study set out to determine the seroprevalence of herpes simplex virus (HSV) in a population of HIV-positive patients in Canada. The study participants were HIV patients attending five infectious-disease clinics for follow-up care.

After their informed consent was obtained, the participants completed a questionnaire documenting HIV risk behavior, duration of infection, history of oral and/or genital herpes, and treatment for HIV and/or genital herpes. Clinicians drew blood for HSV type-specific serology; the samples were tested by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (Focus Diagnostics HerpeSelect HSV-1,HSV-2 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay IgG). Equivocal samples were repeated; Western blot was used to resolve any discrepant results.

In all, 629 HIV-positive patients took part. Participants' mean age was 43.9; 74.7 percent were born in Canada; and 72.3 percent were men. Most foreign-born subjects were black (endemic) and women. HSV-1 seroprevalence was 78.1 percent; HSV-2 seroprevalence was 54.6 percent. Females were 2.7 times more likely to be positive for HSV-2. Foreign-born participants were 2.0 times more likely to be positive for HSV-2. Nonwhite subjects were 3.2 times more likely to be seropositive. The lowest seroprevalence of HSV-2 was observed among men who have sex with men. A history of genital herpes was reported by only 30.3 percent of participants positive for HSV-2.

Noting that "a significant proportion of HIV-infected subjects attending five infectious-disease clinics in Canada are co-infected with HSV," the authors concluded that "routine type-specific HSV-2 testing should be introduced to direct education regarding symptoms, signs, and transmission reduction of genital herpes, and perhaps ultimately of HIV-1. Knowledge of HSV serostatus would also provide an opportunity to consider antiviral therapy."

Back to other news for May 2009

Excerpted from:
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
03.09.2009; Vol. 36; No. 3: P. 165-169; Barbara Romanowski, MD, FRCPC, FACP, and others




This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. You can find this article online by typing this address into your Web browser:
http://www.thebody.com/content/art51790.html

General Disclaimer: TheBody.com is designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. The information provided through TheBody.com should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, consult your health care provider.