Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)
(Microbiology)
Investigations Varicella-Zoster Virus (VZV)
Infection with Varicella Zoster Virus is common. Primary infection with the virus is the cause of chickenpox, which often occurs in childhood. The virus is also the causative agent of shingles which is due to localised reactivation of the virus. Rare complications include pneumonitis and pregnant women are at risk.

Serology Tests
VZV IgG

Molecular Tests
VZV PCR
Inform lab before sending No, except for URGENT SAMPLES. Contact the laboratory on 0151 706 4410 to request urgent testing.
Specimen type Serology Tests
Clotted blood:5ml Clot activator and separation gel (GOLD CAPPED) container

Molecular Tests
Swabs:Use the Sigma-Virocult swab (GREEN CAPPED) or REMEL swab (RED CAPPED) collection kits
EDTA: 4ml blood into a EDTA (LAVENDER CAPPED) container
CSF: Collect at least 0.2ml using the CSF sample collection kit if available. A sterile container is a suitable alternative.
Bronchoalveolarlavage: Collected in a sterile leak-proof container.
Ideal time to take specimen  
Labelling requirements click here
How to take the specimen For investigation of vesicular skin lesions, rub the top off a vesicle with a sterile swab to absorb the vesicle fluid.
If necessary, burst the vesicle with a sterile needle and absorb the vesicle fluid with the swab.
Transport to the laboratory If transport is delayed then store at +4°C
Test Times Serology: Daily
VZV PCR: Daily
Turnround Serology: 3 working days
VZV PCR: 5 working days
Additional information Bacterial Transport Media(blue swabs),cannotbe processed by molecular diagnostic methods.
Additional Examination Requests click here


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