Brucella serology; Brucella antibody test or titer
A normal result shows no antibodies to Brucella. However, during the first few days to weeks of exposure to an antigen, there may be very little antibody production. Therefore, a serology test may not detect early stage disease.
As brucellosis progresses, more antibodies will be present. If the health care provider suspects brucellosis, you may need to have the test repeated 10 days to 2 weeks after the first test to watch for this rise.
Infection with other bacteria, such as Yersinia, Francisella, and Vibrio, and immunizations can make the test falsely positive.
Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.
If the test detects antibodies, you have likely been exposed to the Brucella bacteria (possible brucellosis).
Salata RA. Brucellosis. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2007: chap 331.
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