The purpose of screening is early diagnosis and treatment. Screening tests are usually given to people without current symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain diseases.
There are no screening guidelines for cold sores.
A simple antibody blood test can show if you have been exposed to the herpes virus in the past. If you test positive, it means you could get a cold sore in the future. However, most people test positive for this virus. Therefore, this test is not very useful for screening purposes.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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http://dermnetnz.org/viral/herpes-simplex.html. Updated December 29, 2013. Accessed February 14, 2014.
Kuehl B. Cold sores: how to prevent and treat them. Skin Care Guide website. Available at:
http://www.skincareguide.ca/articles/herpes/to%5Fprevent%5Fcold%5Fsores.html. Accessed February 14, 2014.