Search all medical codes

Antibody; herpes simplex, non-specific type test

CPT4 code

Name of the Procedure:

Antibody Test for Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) - Non-Specific Type


The Antibody Test for Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) is a blood test that checks for antibodies produced by the immune system in response to a herpes infection. The test does not differentiate between the two types of herpes simplex virus (HSV-1 and HSV-2).


This test is used to determine whether a person has been previously infected with the herpes simplex virus. It helps diagnose an active or past herpes infection even if symptoms are not currently present. By identifying the presence of antibodies, it aids in managing and preventing the spread of the virus.


  • Symptoms of herpes infection such as sores, blisters, or ulcers around the mouth or genitals.
  • Frequent recurrent infections.
  • Unexplained neurological symptoms.
  • Routine screening in high-risk populations (e.g., sexually active individuals, pregnant women).
  • Prior to organ transplantation.


No special preparation is required for this blood test. Patients can eat and drink normally unless otherwise advised by their healthcare provider.

Procedure Description

  1. A healthcare provider will clean the skin with an alcohol pad where the blood sample will be taken.
  2. An elastic band will be wrapped around the upper arm to make the veins more visible.
  3. A needle will be inserted into a vein, usually in the arm.
  4. Blood will be collected into one or more vials.
  5. The needle is removed and a bandage applied to the puncture site.


The blood draw typically takes about 5-10 minutes.


The procedure is usually performed in a laboratory, outpatient clinic, or physician's office.


  • Phlebotomist or nurse to collect the blood sample.
  • Laboratory technicians to analyze the sample.
  • Physician or healthcare provider to interpret the results.

Risks and Complications

  • Minor pain, bruising, or bleeding at the needle insertion site.
  • Rarely, infection or fainting may occur.


  • Provides information on past or present herpes infection.
  • Helps with clinical decision-making and management of herpes.
  • Assists in preventing the spread of the virus.


No special care is needed post-procedure. Patients can resume normal activities immediately. Any discomfort at the puncture site typically resolves quickly.


  • Viral culture from a lesion: more specific but requires active sores.
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test: more sensitive but more expensive and may require a lesion sample.
  • Type-specific serologic tests: differentiate between HSV-1 and HSV-2 antibodies.

Pros and Cons:

  • Antibody Test: less specific but widely available and easy to perform.
  • PCR and culture: more specific, but require active lesions and are more costly.

Patient Experience

During the blood draw, the patient may feel a slight prick or pinch. Mild soreness or bruising at the injection site may occur afterward, but typically resolves quickly. Pain management is usually not necessary. Relaxation techniques can help ease any anxiety during the procedure.

Medical Policies and Guidelines for Antibody; herpes simplex, non-specific type test

Related policies from health plans

Similar Codes