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Subspecialties Screening and monitoring, Microbiology and immunology

Subpar Screening

“The CDC estimates that almost one in six people in the US between the ages of 14 and 49 is infected with genital herpes,” says Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, Chair of the US Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF). It’s this high prevalence that drove the USPSTF recommendation on serologic screening for genital herpes in asymptomatic, pregnant women, adults, and adolescents back in 2005. But is this broad-brush approach a good one? Based on more recent evidence, the Task Force now doesn’t seem to think so, and it’s calling for a rethink (1).

The sexually transmitted infection is caused by subtypes of the herpes simplex virus – HSV-1 and HSV-2 – that can cause blisters, ulcers, aches, swollen glands, and fevers. However, a portion of HSV carriers appears asymptomatic, and the CDC states that most infections are spread by patients who are unaware that they have the virus (2).

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About the Author

William Aryitey

My fascination with science, gaming, and writing led to my studying biology at university, while simultaneously working as an online games journalist. After university, I travelled across Europe, working on a novel and developing a game, before finding my way to Texere. As Associate Editor, I’m evolving my loves of science and writing, while continuing to pursue my passion for gaming and creative writing in a personal capacity.

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