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A viral lesion culture is performed to confirm herpes simplex virus present in a skin lesion. The specimen is collected by scraping the suspected skin lesion or aspirating fluid from the lesion. Results are available within 16 hours to 7 days of receipt of the specimen, depending on the culture method used.
Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.