Human Herpes Virus 6 by PCR

Human Herpes Virus 6 by PCR

Human Herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) is a set of two closely related herpes viruses known as HHV-6A and HHV- 6B. They infect nearly all human beings, typically before age two. The HHV-6 by PCR test is a medical test used to detect the presence of Human Herpesvirus 6 DNA in your blood. This test uses the method of polymerase chain reaction (PCR), a widely used molecular biology technique, to amplify and detect viral DNA, making it highly sensitive and accurate for identifying the virus.

While the primary HHV-6 infection can cause a fever and possibly roseola (a skin rash), some infected individuals show no symptoms. After the initial infection, HHV-6 becomes latent and can reactivate later in life. Understanding your HHV-6 status can help you and your healthcare provider make informed decisions regarding your health.

  • Test NameHuman Herpes Virus 6 by PCR
  • Sample TypeWB-EDTA, CSF
  • Preparations RequiredNo fasting required. No specific preparation needed.
  • Report Time2 days

Why is the Human Herpes Virus 6 by PCR test performed?

This test is primarily performed to detect the presence of HHV-6 in the blood, especially in cases where the virus may be causing health issues. It can also help identify cases of viral reactivation in people with weakened immune systems.

What is the importance of getting this test done?

This test is crucial for individuals who have unexplained symptoms that may be caused by a HHV-6 infection or reactivation. Early detection can enable your healthcare provider to manage your symptoms and prevent complications.

Home Sample Collection Process
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Sample Collection by Phlebotomist
Sample Collection by Phlebotomist
Reporting of the sample at lab
Reporting of the sample at lab
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Frequently Asked Questions

No fasting is necessary for the Human Herpes Virus 6 by PCR test.

This test is recommended if you have symptoms that suggest a possible HHV-6 infection, or if your healthcare provider suspects you may have an active HHV-6 infection based on your health history and current symptoms.

This test identifies the presence of HHV-6 DNA in your blood, which indicates an active HHV-6 infection or reactivation.

Factors such as your immune system status and overall health can affect the levels of HHV-6 in your body. For example, people with weakened immune systems are more likely to experience HHV-6 reactivation.

If you have an active HHV-6 infection, it's crucial to follow your healthcare provider's advice for managing your symptoms and preventing the spread of the virus.

In a healthy individual without an active HHV-6 infection, the test results should be negative.

If your test values are abnormal, indicating an active HHV-6 infection, you should consult with a healthcare provider who specializes in infectious diseases.

No, the test cannot be performed at home. It requires a blood sample to be taken and sent to a laboratory for analysis.

In some individuals, especially those with weakened immune systems, an active HHV-6 infection can cause complications such as encephalitis, liver disease, and lung disease.

The typical turnaround time for the HHV-6 by PCR test is 3-7 days, but this may vary depending on the laboratory.

This test is primarily used for diagnosing an active HHV-6 infection or reactivation, not for screening.

While there is no cure for HHV-6, the symptoms can be managed. Antiviral medications may be used in severe cases, especially in people with weakened immune systems.

There's currently no vaccine to prevent HHV-6. However, maintaining a healthy immune system can help prevent the virus from reactivating.

While both are types of the same virus, they differ in their epidemiology and disease associations. HHV- 6B is more common and is associated with a childhood illness called roseola. HHV-6A is less common and is not associated with any specific illness, although it has been implicated in several neurological conditions.

A positive result means that the virus is active in your body, and you currently have an HHV-6 infection. This could be a primary infection (the first time you are infected) or a reactivation of the virus if you were infected earlier in life.

If you're experiencing symptoms of an HHV-6 infection but your test result is negative, it's possible the virus wasn't present in your blood at the time of testing. It could also mean your symptoms are due to another cause. Always consult with your healthcare provider for a correct diagnosis and treatment.

Yes, HHV-6 can be transmitted from person to person, typically through contact with an infected person's saliva. It's most commonly spread among young children.

Yes, like other herpesviruses, HHV-6 remains in the body after the initial infection and can reactivate later in life, especially in times of stress or immune compromise.

PCR tests are highly sensitive and specific, making them very reliable for detecting viral DNA, including that of HHV-6.

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