Neurological Viral Screen Blood Test, from our experts to you.
Dr Sam Rodgers MBBS, MRCGP

Chief Medical Officer meet our doctors

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What are
viruses?

Viruses are infectious agents that multiply inside living cells. All viruses have the same basic structure, but their shape or size may vary.


How can you
treat a virus?

Unlike bacteria, viruses cannot be grown in culture, and antibiotics are not an effective treatment against them. There are some anti-viral drugs now available that work by either preventing viruses from entering a cell or by altering their ability to replicate.


How can viruses
cause disease?

Viruses can cause disease in a variety of ways, including:

  • - Viruses may destroy or disrupt the activity of the cells they invade - this can be serious if vital organs are affected
  • - Your immune response (defence) may lead to symptoms - fever and fatigue
  • - Through interaction with the chromosomes of the host cell - i.e. viruses can cause cancer
  • - They may cause disease by weakening the immune (defence) system allowing other illnesses to develop - as in AIDS
  • - The body's defence against virus invasion is fairly rapid, but a virus can hide from the immune system allowing the infection to recur or become chronic

What's included?

Immunity
Select profile for more information

Cytomegalovirus IgG Cytomegalovirus, or CMV is a virus of the herpes family. It is thought that it is transmitted through bodily fluids, and the symptoms include fever, sore throat and swollen lymph nodes. The virus can cause birth defects and pregnancy complications in pregnant women. The virus can also be very dangerous for immunocompromised individuals. Many organs can become inflamed and damaged, including the liver, the retina, and the colon (large intestine). A few weeks after being initially infected with CMV, the immune system produces an antibody called IgG.
Cytomegalovirus IgM Immunoglobulins or antibodies, play an important role in the immune system and help fight against harmful bacteria and viruses in the body. IgM antibodies are involved in the very early stages of an immune response and first to be made by the body when fighting a new infection, providing short-term protection.
Measles IgM Measles is a viral infection which used to be common in childhood. The measles immunisation has been included in the UK childhood immunisation program since 1968 and it is now so rare that the World Health Organisation declared that measles had been eliminated in the UK in 2016. Symptoms develop 10-14 days after catching the virus, these include a blotchy red rash, fever, dry cough, runny nose, red and watery eyes and spots within the mouth. In most cases the infection is cleared by the immune system, but in a small number of cases the infection can be more serious, requiring hospitalisation. This test measures Measles IgM antibodies which are part of the immune systems response to current measles infection.
Measles IgG This test measures IgG antibodies to the measles virus which will tell you whether or not you are immune to measles. A result above a certain level will be reported as positive which means that you are immune to measles. Your result can also be reported as equivocal (which means that antibodies have been detected but they are not at a level where immunity is certain) or negative, which means that you are not immune to measles. Measles is a contagious disease which is spread through coughing and sneezing. Measles causes symptoms such as a runny nose, cough and fever, red, light-sensitive eyes and small whitish spots on the inside of the cheeks. After a few days, a rash will develop. Measles often passes without incident, but in some cases serious complications such as pneumonia and encephalitis (swelling of the brain) can develop. Immunity to measles is acquired through being vaccinated or as a result of having recovered from a previous infection. Once you are immune you are unlikely to catch measles again or pass measles onto another person. Health care workers may be required to prove immunity to measles by their employer.
Mumps IgM Mumps caused by a virus from the Paramyxoviridae family, transmitted through air droplets or through direct contact with an infected person. Symptoms begin very generally with fever, headache and muscle pain, succeeded by large swellings in the neck as the salivary glands become inflamed and swollen. When infected with the virus, the immune system produces the antibody known as IgM initially, to help the body to destroy the virus.
Mumps IgG This test measures the level of IgG antibodies to mumps in your blood which will tell you whether you are immune to mumps. A result above a certain level will mean that your result is positive and you are immune to mumps. If your antibodies are below this level then your results may be reported as equivocal (where immunity is not certain) or negative which means that you are not immune to mumps. Mumps is a contagious viral infection which is spread through coughing and sneezing. It causes symptoms such as headaches and joint pain, as well as the characteristic swelling of the parotid salivary glands just below the ears. Some individuals will also experience swelling of the testicles and ovaries, and it can cause viral meningitis in a minority of cases. Immunity to mumps can be acquired through vaccination or from having recovered from a previous infection. Immunity means that you will not catch mumps and neither can you spread mumps to another person. Health care workers may need to prove their mumps immunity to their employer.
Herpes simplex virus 1 and 2 IgM
Herpes simplex virus 1 IgG The herpes simplex virus causes herpes, a common sexually transmitted disease. Herpes simplex viruses are categorised into two types: herpes type 1 (HSV-1, or oral herpes) and herpes type 2 (HSV-2, or genital herpes). In response to a herpes infection, the body produces antibodies to fight the virus.
Herpes simplex virus 2 IgG The herpes simplex virus causes herpes, a common sexually transmitted disease. Herpes simplex viruses are categorised into two types: herpes type 1 (HSV-1, or oral herpes) and herpes type 2 (HSV-2, or genital herpes). In response to a herpes infection, the body produces antibodies to fight the virus.
Varicella zoster IgG Varicella Zoster is another name for the virus which causes chickenpox and shingles. It is a type of herpes virus and tends to infect a large proportion of the population at a young age, causing chicken pox, and from there on it lays dormant in the nerve cells. However, in about 25% of people, the virus may reactivate later in life, presenting itself as shingles, a painful blistering rash focussed on one particular area of the body. Testing for the presence of IgG in the blood indicates whether someone has previously been infected and has developed immunity to the virus.

How to prepare
for your test

Special instructions

Prepare for your Neurological Viral Screen Blood Test by following these instructions. Do not take biotin supplements for two days before this test, discuss this with your doctor if it is prescribed.


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