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Laboratory Diagnosis of Tick-Borne Infections

Part 2


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Testing of Ticks by PCR

Slide 36

July 2010

So what about testing of the actual tick by PCR? Well, In general, testing is not recommended, since the presence of a tick is really a marker for exposure to ticks in general. The tick that is noticed could be positive for a number of diseases by PCR, but that doesn’t mean that it successfully transmitted any of them to the host. Or, the tick could be negative, but the patient could still have Lyme disease from a separate exposure – even from a tick that the patient didn’t realize was present. Therefore, it’s really best to rely on guidelines as previously mentioned for treatment decisions regarding tick-borne diseases rather than performing any test on the tick itself.

Testing of Ticks by PCR


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