PCR analysis for 12 infections is a technique that is based on the use of a polymerase chain reaction, which in turn allows the patient to be examined for infectious and hereditary diseases regardless of whether they are acute or chronic. Such an analysis can show a positive result long before the symptoms of various diseases begin to appear.
Benefits of PCR analysis
The procedure for diagnosing infectious processes through the use of PCR is very relevant today. Among its advantages, detection of infectious agents without the presence of characteristic symptoms of the disease, readiness of results within four hours after the procedure, maximum sensitivity to infectious agents (demonstrates a positive result even with a single pathogenic cell) are worth noting.
Erroneous and false reactions are practically excluded, and in addition, the analysis allows to identify the infectious-type RNA or DNA of the agent.
At the moment, the diagnostic technique is undergoing active stages of improvement, new varieties of PCR are emerging.
The diagnostic procedure is carried out only in the laboratory with the use of special enzymes that contribute to the increase in the structure of the patient's RNA and DNA several times. In other words, the number of RNA and DNA reaches a level that can be analyzed visually. During the period of the survey, the process of copying a section of DNA or RNA is being carried out, which fits with certain conditions with maximum accuracy.
Each laboratory working with this type of diagnosis has a special database that allows you to accurately determine the presence of an infectious agent.
The number of laboratories that offer this kind of method is increasing every day, which allows, in turn, to diagnose everyone. The PCR method allows not only to determine the presence of a pathogen, but also to calculate its quantitative ratio as accurately as possible.
Among the innovations that diagnostics offers, it is worth noting the possibility of determining paternity, connecting certain sections of DNA, introducing mutations, etc.
Infections that can be detected by PCR analysis
PCR analysis is actively used by gynecologists, oncologists, gastroenterologists, phthisiologists, pulmonologists, etc. The PCR analysis allows to identify the following infectious processes:
- Helicobacter pylori infection;
- candidal infections;
- HPV and its oncogenic subtypes;
- sexually transmitted infections;
- herpes of the first and second type, hepatitis;
- Mycobacterium tuberculosis;
- Epstein-Barr virus.
And this is only the main part of the infections that can be determined by using PCR analysis.
Rules and algorithm for the collection of material for analysis
In order to determine the presence of an infection that is transmitted through sexual contact in a patient, a swab / scraping from the genitals or urine is taken for examination. If the study is carried out with the aim of determining infectious diseases, such as hepatitis, herpes, HIV, etc., the patient's venous blood is used. A smear from the oral cavity is used to test for the presence of mononucleosis (Epstein-Barr virus). Sometimes a spinal fluid is needed for analysis - it allows you to determine the cause of the appearance of certain neurological diseases. If a newborn child is suspected of having an intrauterine infection, a piece of the placenta and a sample of amniotic fluid are taken for examination.
The results of the diagnosis are the most reliable, and the error is practically excluded. The reliability of the procedure depends on how correctly the materials were taken for analysis.
Among the most important recommendations before submitting the material for analysis, it is worth noting that urine is collected in the morning in a special sterile container, blood is given in the morning on an empty stomach. In addition, 24 hours before the procedure, it is forbidden to have sexual intercourse, and before passing the smear, an urination act must be performed two hours later. Women two days before the procedure, it is necessary to refuse douching and the introduction of a suppository into the vagina.
The results of the analysis can be ready both in four hours and in two days, everything directly depends on the diagnosed disease and the quality of the material taken for analysis.
Deciphering the results
The result can be both negative and positive. A negative response demonstrates that no infectious pathogenic cells were detected in the sample taken for analysis. Positive analysis indicates the presence in the sample provided for the analysis of infectious agents. If there is a positive result of the analysis, it is necessary to select an effective and high-quality treatment as quickly as possible.
A positive result without the presence of symptoms of the disease is an indicator of the early stage of the disease or that the patient is the carrier of the infection. In relation to carriers, drug therapy is not used, but regular control tests are carried out to track the dynamics. Among these diseases are herpes and HPV infection.
If the patient is a carrier of an infectious disease - he endangers everyone around him, therefore, it is recommended to conduct therapy that will block the spread of infection.
The results also indicate the quantitative characteristics of pathogenic cells, based on which the doctor determines the activity of the disease and selects the most effective therapeutic course. Among the most important characteristics of the PCR analysis for 12 infections are worth noting: sensitivity, specificity and accuracy.