Definition of Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8)

Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8): A herpesvirus that contributes to the development of Kaposi sarcoma, an otherwise rare form of cancer sometimes seen in AIDS patients, and to some B-cell lymphomas.

The predominant route of HHV-8 transmission is sexual. An additional route is via blood contact among injection drug users. Diagnosis is by rapid blood culture or another blood test. Treatment is experimental at this time, but anti-viral drugs or beta interferon may be tried.

Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) is also known as Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus, or KSHV.


Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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