Diagnostic Testing for SFG Rickettsioses
Many diagnostic tests for spotted fevers, especially tests based on the detection of antibodies, will frequently appear negative in the first 7-10 days of illness and cannot be relied upon for initiation of antibiotic therapy (doxycycline).
The CDPH Viral and Rickettsial Disease Laboratory (VRDL) offers the following diagnostic testing for SFG rickettsioses:
PCR testing of eschars or swabs for PCTF
PCR assays for several Rickettsia species
(a pan-rickettsial assay and species-specific assays for R. rickettsii, R. 364D, R. typhi, and R. felis)
Samples must be accompanied with the
General Purpose Specimen Submittal Form (PDF) found on the
VRDL Specimen Submittal Forms webpage. Please indicate rickettsial species suspected.