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Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust
Lyme Disease Serology
CategoryMicrobiology - Virology
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This test should not be used as a general screen for asymptomatic patients, even if there is a history of tick bite or exposure. 
Please include: Relevant symptoms and signs; date of onset of illness; tick bite history and other relevant information e.g. travel, occupational, or other risk history.
Test information
Interpretation of results: 
Negative result: no IgG antibody to Borrelia burgdorferi detected. 
If the sample was timed appropriately in relation to the clinical presentation, a negative result indicates infection is unlikely. 
This result does not exclude the possibility of B burgdorferi infection. Patients in early stages of infection may not produce detectable levels of antibody, especially if antibiotic treatment has been administered. 
Patients with a clinical history and/or symptoms suggestive of Lyme disease or where early Lyme disease is suspected, but with negative test results, retest in 2 to 4 weeks should be considered. 
Positive result: IgG antibody to B burgdorferi detected. 
A positive result indicates probable prior exposure to B. burgdorferi. 
All positive results will be referred to the Reference laboratory for confirmation and further markers, but positive results must be interpreted in the light of clinical manifestations and the indication for testing. 
A positive result does not provide definitive evidence of infection with B. burgdorferi. It is possible that other disease conditions, including syphilis,  rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and other infections and autoimmune diseases may produce a positive result in the assay. 
If specimens can not be tested on the day of collection, store them at 2-8˚C in stoppered tubes for up to 6 days. 
Any materials used in taking these samples must be discarded in an approved clinical waste and/or sharps container.
Gold top tube
TAT Inpatient
Referral lab
Porton Down
Page last updated: 08 September 2021