Test Directory

Herpes Simplex Virus 1 and 2, Qualitative PCR, Blood

Print this page

Updated Test Information:

Test Description
Herpes Simplex Virus 1 and 2, Qualitative PCR, Blood

Herpes Simplex Virus Detection by Real-Time PCR; HSV (Herpes Simplex Virus) by PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction); HSV Detection by Real-Time PCR; HSV PCR

Test ID
General Information

Useful for:

  • Direct detection and differentiation of HSV-1 and HSV-2 DNA in whole blood specimens from symptomatic patients who are suspected to have disseminated disease

  • Diagnosis of HSV infection in symptomatic patients

  • This test is not intended to be used for prenatal screenings

  • This test is intended for symptomatic patients with evidence of disseminated herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection. It should not be used to determine if a patient has been exposed to HSV at some point in the past; rather, it should be ordered when there is a suspicion for active infection.

  • If herpes simplex virus (HSV) is suspected in sources other than blood, order HERPV / Herpes Simplex Virus 1 and 2, Qualitative PCR, Varies

  • If HSV is suspected in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), order HSVC / Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV), Molecular Detection, PCR, Spinal Fluid

Specimen Type

EDTA Whole Blood

Specimen Requirements

Lavender EDTA


Refrigerated: 7 days

Unacceptable Specimen Conditions

All specimens will be evaluated at Mayo Clinic Laboratories for test suitability.


  • A negative result does not eliminate the possibility of herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection. There is a risk of a falsenegative result due to improperly collected or transported blood specimens

  • There is a risk of a false-positive result due to contamination by target organisms or their nucleic acids, which may be introduced at the point of sample collection or testing. Every effort to minimize the risk of contamination should be taken

  • The ARIES HSV 1 and 2 assay may not detect a coinfection of HSV-1 and -2 in specimens where the 2 virus types are not equally represented in clinical specimens. The ARIES HSV-1 and -2 assay detects and differentiates between HSV-1 and HSV-2 only. It does not detect or differentiate any other herpes viruses (eg, cytomegalovirus [CMV], Epstein-Barr virus [EBV]). This assay does not distinguish between infectious HSV-1or -2, and the presence of nucleic acid (ie, noninfectious viral particles)

  • Results should be interpreted in conjunction with other clinical and laboratory findings.


Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR)

Estimated TAT

1-3 days

Testing Schedule



7 days

CPT Code(s)


Additional Information
Minimum Sample Volume

0.3 mL

Reference Range


Performing Lab


LOINC Code(s)

92870-5, 92873-9