For detection and typing of herpes simplex virus (HSV) in patients suspected of having HSV encephalitis, uveitis and HSV infections in other sites.
(a) CSF: At least 0.5 mL of undiluted sample in a sterile and leak-proof screw-capped container without any additives. (b) Swab for vesicles: Use Dacron-tipped swabs. Sample base of lesions vigorously and send dry in swab sheath. (c) Blood: 1-3 mL of EDTA whole blood only for suspected neonatal HSV infection or HSV hepatitis.
Refrigerate sample until transfer to laboratory. Do not freeze. Send sample at 2 - 8°C (with an ice-pack). Sample must reach the laboratory within 24 hours after collection.
In-house real-time multiplex Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)
Detected, Not Detected or Inconclusive
1 - 4 days; next working day for CSF samples
Mondays and Thursdays (except Public Holidays)