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We performed indirect immunofluorescence assays (IFAs) to compare levels of IgM and IgG antibodies to Orientia tsutsugamushi and Rickettsia typhi in admission-phase serum samples and filter paper blood spots (assayed immediately and stored at 5.4 degrees C and 29 degrees C for 30 days) collected on the same day from 53 adults with suspected scrub typhus and murine typhus admitted to Mahosot Hospital Vientiane, Lao People's Democratic Republic. The sensitivities and specificities of admission-phase filter paper blood spots in comparison to paired sera were between 91% and 95% and 87% and 100%, respectively, for the diagnosis of scrub typhus and murine typhus. The classification of patients as having or not having typhus did not significantly differ after storage of the blood spots for 30 days (P > 0.4) at 5.4 degrees C and 29 degrees C. Because filter paper blood samples do not require sophisticated and expensive storage and transport, they may be an appropriate specimen collection technique for the diagnosis of rickettsial disease in the rural tropics.

Original publication

DOI

10.4269/ajtmh.2009.80.837

Type

Journal article

Journal

The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene

Publication Date

05/2009

Volume

80

Pages

837 - 840

Addresses

Wellcome Trust-Mahosot Hospital-Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Collaboration, Microbiology Laboratory, Mahosot Hospital, Vientiane, Lao People's Democratic Republic.

Keywords

Humans, Typhus, Endemic Flea-Borne, Scrub Typhus, Immunoglobulin G, Immunoglobulin M, Antibodies, Bacterial, Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect, Specimen Handling, Blood Specimen Collection, Sensitivity and Specificity, Pilot Projects, Temperature, Adolescent, Adult, Middle Aged, Young Adult