Yersinia pestis

Specimen Collection and Handling

Specimen Requirements

Test Requested Required Requisition(s) Specimen Type Minimum Volume Collection Kit

Yersinia pestis serology, or Plague

Whole blood or serum

5.0 ml whole blood or 1.0 ml serum

Vacutainer tubes (SST)

Submission and Collection Notes

1

Indicate symptoms and date of onset on the General Test Requisition Form if diagnostic testing is required.

Timing of Specimen Collection

An acute (collected early after the onset of symptoms) and a convalescent (collected 2-3 weeks later) may be required for laboratory diagnosis.

Limitations

Haemolysed, icteric, lipemic or microbially contaminated sera or plasma are not recommended for testing.

Preparation Prior to Transport

Label the specimen container with the patient’s full name, date of collection and one other unique identifier such as the patient’s date of birth or Health Card Number. Failure to provide this information may result in rejection or testing delay.

Special Instructions

Centrifuge if using SST. Label specimens with at least two identifiers; place it in biohazard bag and seal. Specimens should be stored at 2-8°C following collection and shipped to PHOL on ice packs.

Requisitions and Kit Ordering

Test Frequency and Turnaround Time (TAT)

Yersinia pestis serology is a Referred Out Test. Samples are sent to the Centers for Disease Control in Fort Collins, Colorado.

Turnaround time is up to 21 days from receipt by PHO laboratory.

Reporting

Results are reported to the ordering physician or health care provider as indicated on the requisition.

Specimens that are positive for Yersinia pestis serology are reported to the Medical Officer of Health as per Health Protection and Promotion Act.

Test Methods

Yersinia pestis serology test is performed using Agglutination assay.

contact lab

Contact Laboratory Customer Service

Laboratory Services

customerservicecentre@oahpp.ca

Updated 21 Dec 2018