Meningitis/Encephalitis Panel, Qualitative PCR, CSF

Abbrev Code:MENPCR   
Order Code:LAB8232Order Name:Meningitis/Encephalitis Panel Qualitative PCR CSF
Synonyms:E. coli K1; Haemophilus influenzae; Listeria; Neisseria meningitidis; Group B Strep; Strep pneumoniae; Cytomegaovirus; Enterovirus; HSV 1 and 2; HHV6; Human parechovirus; Varicella and Cryptococcus
Methodology:Qualitative mutiplex PCR
CPT Codes: 87483 x1
Turnaround Time:Specimens are performed daily; results are reported in 24 hours.

Collection Instructions

Optimal Volume:1 mL
Minimum\Peds Volume:0.5 mL
Container:Sterile tube
Alternate Containers: Microbiology containers
Causes for Rejection:Specimens other than CSF. CSF shunt fluid is not acceptable for testing. Frozen samples are not acceptable for testing. Any sample in transport media is not acceptable.
Contraindications:The presence of excessively elevated protein (albumin) levels in the sample may interfere with testing. False negative results for herpes simplex virus may occur; therefore, consider HSV testing by another PCR-based test if the ME panel is negative and clinical suspicion is high.  The ME panel may be negative for Cryptococcus neoformans/gattii in patients with cryptococcal meningitis, especially those receiving treatment; therefore, consider cryptococcal antigen testing if the ME panel is negative and clinical suspicion is high. Detection of multiple viruses or bacteria may be observed with this test. In these situations, the clinical history and presentation should be reviewed thoroughly to determine the clinical significance of multiple pathogens in the same specimen.

Processing and Shipping

Specimen Processing:Do not centrifuge. Aliquot 1 mL, 0.5 mL minimum. Store refrigerated. Do not freeze.
Shipping Instructions:Ship at refrigerated temperature in a red STAT bag. Specimens must arrive in the testing lab at refrigerated temperature within 7 days of collection. Protect from temperature extremes.
Stability:7 days refrigerated.
Test Performed at or Referral Lab Infectious Diseases Diagnostic Laboratory   (UMMC East Bank)


Critical Range:Positive
Reference Range:Negative for all targets.
Limitations:This test is not intended for use with CSF collected from indwelling medical devices/shunts. This test is not recommended for use as a test of cure.
Use:This test is a multiplex PCR assay capable of qualitatively detecting DNA or RNA of 14 pathogens in approximately 1 hour from CSF samples. This test is used to diagnose infection caused by Escherichia coli K1, Haemophilus influenzae, Listeria monocytogenes, Nesseria meningitidis, Streptococcus agalactiae, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Cytomegalovirus, Enterovirus, Herpes Simplex 1 and 2, Human herpes 6, human parechovirus, varicella zoster virus and Cryptococcus neoformans/gattii.

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