Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)
Rapid detection of Varicella zoster virus DNA in clinical specimens.
Varicella zoster virus DNA not detected.
A negative test result does not rule out the presence of Varicella zoster virus. Results should be used in conjunction with other laboratory test results and the patient's clinical profile.
- VZV DNA detection by PCR
- Herpes zoster virus detection, PCR
- Chicken Pox detection, PCR
For blister, lesion, or vesicle, unroof and scrape the base of the lesion with a Dacron or rayon swab to collect fluid and cells. Place the swab into M4-RT transport medium. Ideally specimens should be collected within 3-4 days of the onset of symptoms but no greater than 7 days. Specimens collected from lesions in the acute or vesicular stage will yield a higher number of viruses. Avoid contamination with creams, ointments, lotions, alcohol, Betadine solution or blood due to the potential for PCR inhibition. Transport within 48 hours of collection at room temperature or refrigerated. If delivery to the laboratory will be delayed >48 hours, freeze specimen at less than or equal to 20 degrees Celsius. Do not allow frozen specimens to thaw; transport as soon as possible. Calcium alginate swabs are not acceptable.
The Varicella zoster virus PCR is a real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification and detection system that utilizes a bi-functional fluorescent probe-primer for the detection of Varicella zoster virus in lesion/vesicle swabs. The assay has been validated as a direct protocol using unprocessed specimens. A DNA internal control is used to monitor the process for reagent integrity and to detect PCR inhibition. Results should be used in conjunction with other laboratory test results and the patient's clinical profile