Introduction The psychological impact of genital herpes simplex virus (GHSV) can be significant but appropriate antiviral therapy and counselling can reduce anxiety and improve quality of life during recurrences. We evaluated the management of GHSV in our integrated sexual health clinics.
Methods Retrospective case notes audit of patients who were clinically diagnosed with first episode of GHSV, or managed with suppressive therapy for recurrent herpes, between March 2016 and May 2016. The case notes were identified from GUMCADv2 dataset (code C10a/C10b). The data were collected using a standard audit record sheet, developed using BASHH guidelines.
Results Of 103, 58% were female. The median age was 26 years (range 16 – 59 yrs). A HSV PCR swab was obtained in all patients presenting with a first episode of GHSV (n = 73). Type 1 and Type 2 HSV were typed in 52% and 38% of cases respectively. Syphilis testing was offered to 84% patients. Aciclovir was given to 85% patients. Verbal information giving was good (78%), whereas provision of written information was poor (19%). In patients (n=30), who were managed with suppressive therapy for recurrences, Type 2 HSV was typed in 83% cases. A reason for commencing suppressive therapy was recorded in 77% cases. A clear plan regarding duration of suppressive treatment and follow-ups were recorded 23% and 67% cases respectively.
Discussion This audit demonstrated many areas of good practice but also identified potential gaps between national recommendations and current clinical practice. Recommendations are made to reach the standards set by BASSH.
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