Serum: freeze or refrigerate specimens after collection.
Whole blood: refrigerate specimens promptly after collection. Do not freeze whole blood.
Ship refrigerated specimens to VRDL on cold packs. Ship frozen specimens to VRDL on dry ice.
Work with your local public health department to ensure samples are packaged according to instructions for Biological Substance – Category B (UN 3373) shipment.
Ship specimens and a hard copy of the completed submittal forms to:
ATTN: Specimen Receiving
850 Marina Bay Parkway
Richmond, CA 94804
Negative result does not preclude the possibility of infection.
Cross reactivity with antibodies to other related bacteria can occur. This is particularly challenging as there may be similarities in antigens among different Rickettsia species or even unrelated bacteria.
Confirmatory testing such as PCR may be necessary for accurate diagnosis, especially in regions where different species coexist.