Sexually Transmitted Diseases

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Sexually Transmitted Diseases:
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Herpes Simplex Virus Seroprevalence and Risk Factors in 2 Canadian Sexually Transmitted Disease Clinics

Singh, Ameeta E. BMBS, MSc*†; Romanowski, Barbara MD*; Wong, Tom MD, MPH‡; Gourishankar, Sita MD, MSc*; Myziuk, Linda MLT*; Fenton, Jayne MLT§; Preiksaitis, Jutta K. MD*§

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Abstract

Objectives: The objectives of this study were to determine the seroprevalence and risk factors for herpes simplex virus (HSV) types 1 and 2 in patients attending 2 Canadian sexually transmitted disease (STD) clinics.

Study: Stored sera were tested for the presence of IgG class antibodies to HSV-1 and HSV-2 and results linked to that obtained from a risk behavior questionnaire.

Results: Overall prevalences for HSV-1 and -2 were 56% and 19%, respectively. HSV-1 and -2 seropositivity was associated with increasing age, female gender, nonwhite ethnicity, and a history of STD. HSV-2 seropositivity was also associated with a history of genital herpes, presence of genital sores, and coinfection with either human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or hepatitis C (HCV).

Conclusions: Herpes simplex infection is common in this high-risk Canadian population. Our finding that HCV seropositivity was a significant predictor for HSV-2 seropositivity emphasizes the overlap between pathogens that are primarily thought to be bloodborne pathogens and sexually transmitted infections and the need to target prevention in these areas concurrently.

© Copyright 2005 American Sexually Transmitted Diseases Association

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