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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update

UNITED STATES: More US Teens Susceptible to HSV-1 Infection, A Cause of Genital Herpes




 

Science Daily (10.17.2013) Aids Weekly Plus

Researchers have found that many US adolescents do not have antibodies to help protect them from herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) which causes cold sores and can cause genital herpes. This virus, as well as HSV-2, cannot be cured but can have dormant periods. Heather Bradley, PhD, and CDC colleagues used National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys data to investigate HSV-1 and HSV-2 prevalence in 14–49-year-olds in the United States. The researchers estimated antibody prevalence for HSV-1 and HSV-2 for all age groups from 2005 to 2010 and compared it to that from 1999 to 2004. They also examined previous HSV-1 and HSV-2 trends. Results showed an overall HSV-1 seroprevalence of 54 percent during 2005 to 2010, but HSV-1 seroprevalence declined by approximately 23 percent from 1999 to 2004 in 14–19-year-olds compared to 2005 to 2010. HSV-1 seroprevalence declined in 20–29-years-olds by more than 9 percent but remained stable in 30- and 40-year-olds. HSV-2 seroprevalence was not different across the age groups in the two time periods. Findings suggested that a number of US adolescents did not have HSV-1 antibodies the first time they had sexual intercourse, which made them more susceptible to genital herpes caused by the HSV-1 strain. Also, with the popularity of oral sex among youth, they might be more likely than youth in the previous time periods to acquire genital HSV-1. The full report, “Seroprevalence of Herpes Simplex Virus Types 1 and 2—United States, 1999–2010,” was published online in the Journal of Infectious Diseases (2013; doi:10.1093/infdis/jit458).



 


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Information in this article was accurate in October 21, 2013. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.