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Japanese Encephalitis Virus - RNA detection by PCR

Japanese Encephalitis Virus - RNA detection by PCR

Japanese Encephalitis (JE) is a serious and potentially fatal disease caused by the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV). This virus, transmitted by mosquitoes, is found mainly in Asia and the Western Pacific region. The infection can result in inflammation of the brain (encephalitis) and various neurological symptoms. Many infected individuals remain asymptomatic or experience mild symptoms, but severe cases can lead to significant morbidity and mortality.

The detection of Japanese Encephalitis Virus RNA by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) is a highly sensitive and specific method used for diagnosing this disease, especially in its early stages. The PCR technique amplifies the RNA of the virus, making it easier to detect even in small quantities. This test can be done on a serum (blood) sample or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which is obtained through a lumbar puncture.

  • Test NameJapanese Encephalitis Virus - RNA detection by PCR
  • Sample TypeBlood
  • Preparations RequiredNo specific preparation is needed before this test. It is important, however, to inform your doctor about any medications, vitamins, or supplements you may be taking, as some substances may interfere with the test results.
  • Report Time3 Days

Why is the Japanese Encephalitis Virus - RNA Detection by PCR test done?

This test is done to diagnose an infection by the Japanese Encephalitis Virus. It is often recommended for individuals who have symptoms of encephalitis, like high fever, headache, neck stiffness, disorientation, coma, tremors, seizures, or paralysis, particularly if they have traveled to or reside in regions where the virus is endemic.

How is the sample collected for this test?

The sample for this test can either be blood (serum) or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Blood is typically drawn from a vein in the arm, while CSF is collected through a procedure known as a lumbar puncture, where a needle is inserted into the lower back to collect fluid from around the spinal cord.

Home Sample Collection Process

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Book your convenient slot
Sample Collection by Phlebotomist
Sample Collection by Phlebotomist
Reporting of the sample at lab
Reporting of the sample at lab
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Download Reports
Frequently Asked Questions

The turnaround time for this test is typically between 2 to 5 days. However, this may vary depending on the lab and its workload.

The blood draw for the serum sample is a standard procedure with minimal risks, such as slight pain or bruising at the injection site. The lumbar puncture for CSF collection, however, is a more invasive procedure and may cause discomfort, headache, or in rare cases, infection or bleeding.

The PCR test detects the presence of the virus's RNA, indicating an active infection. It does not typically show past infections. Serological tests, which detect antibodies produced by the immune system in response to the virus, can provide information about past infections.

Preventive measures against JE include getting vaccinated, particularly if you're traveling to or live in an endemic area, using mosquito repellents, wearing long-sleeved clothes, and staying in accommodations with window and door screens to keep mosquitoes out.

There is no specific treatment for JE. Medical care focuses on relieving symptoms and supporting the patient to overcome the infection. Severe cases often need to be hospitalized for closer monitoring and treatment of complications.

Currently, the most reliable samples for this test are serum and CSF. While other body fluids may contain traces of the virus, their use for this test is not common or well-established.

If you test positive for JE, you should consult a neurologist or an infectious disease specialist. In severe cases, hospitalization may be required.

The test might give a false-negative result if it's done too soon after the infection when the viral RNA levels in the body are still low.

If the PCR test for JEV is negative but symptoms continue, your healthcare provider might order additional tests to explore other possible causes of your symptoms. These might include other infections, autoimmune conditions, or neurological disorders.

The PCR test is generally not used to monitor disease progression. Its primary use is in the initial diagnosis of an active JEV infection. Other clinical assessments and potentially different types of tests would be used to monitor the patient's condition over time.

The JE vaccine is used for prevention, not treatment. If you have an active JEV infection, getting vaccinated won't help treat the disease. However, after recovery, vaccination can be considered to prevent future infections, especially if you continue to live in or travel to endemic areas.

Yes, people living in or visiting rural and semi-urban settings of endemic regions, particularly where rice cultivation and pig rearing are common, are at higher risk. Also, individuals with weakened immune systems may be more susceptible to the infection.

The test is generally done when an individual presents symptoms of Japanese encephalitis and has a history of exposure risk (like travel to endemic areas). It's not a routine screening test, so it's not typically repeated unless symptoms persist or return, or a new exposure to the virus occurs.

With knowledge about the Japanese Encephalitis Virus - RNA Detection by PCR test, you are now better equipped to understand this diagnostic tool and its role in detecting and managing this potentially severe disease. Always consult your healthcare provider for personalized medical advice and never hesitate to ask questions to ensure you understand your health condition and the steps involved in its management.

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