Please be patient! It may take up to ONE minute to load all the Engines.
Problems? Please contact our support.
Lyme disease antibody
Alternative namesLyme disease serology; ELISA for Lyme disease; Western blot for Lyme disease
DefinitionThese tests are used to confirm the diagnosis of Lyme disease .
How the test is performed
Blood is drawn from a vein on the inside of the elbow or the back of the hand. The puncture site is cleaned with antiseptic, and an elastic band is placed around the upper arm to apply pressure and restrict blood flow through the vein. This causes veins below the band to fill with blood.
A needle is inserted into the vein, and the blood is collected in an air-tight vial or a syringe. During the procedure, the band is removed to restore circulation. Once the blood has been collected, the needle is removed, and the puncture site is covered to stop any bleeding.
A more specific test is a Western blot, where the specific antigen bands for Lyme disease are analyzed. This test is the true confirmation of Lyme disease.
How to prepare for the testThere is no special preparation for the test.
For infants and children:
The preparation you can provide for this test depends on your child's age and experience. For specific information regarding how you can prepare your child, see the following topics:
How the test will feelWhen the needle is inserted to draw blood, some people feel moderate pain, while others feel only a prick or stinging sensation. Afterward, there may be some throbbing.
Why the test is performedThe test is performed to help confirm the diagnosis of Lyme disease.
Normal ValuesNonreactive or a very low serum titer (antibody count) are normal.
What abnormal results meanA titer of 1:128 is borderline and further testing should be done. A positive serology by ELISA can help confirm the diagnosis of Lyme disease, but it is not definitive because other diseases and high rheumatoid factors can cause false positives. A Western blot can confirm the diagnosis of Lyme disease.
What the risks are
The risks associated with having blood drawn are:
Special considerationsVeins and arteries vary in size from one patient to another and from one side of the body to the other. Obtaining a blood sample from some people may be more difficult than from others.
Update Date: 1/19/2004Daniel Levy, M.D., Ph.D., Infectious Diseases, Greater Baltimore Medical Center, Baltimore, MD. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT