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Lyme Disease Western Blot Test

Recent and Past Exposure Western Blot test
Sample Report
Specimen Type: Blood


Lyme Disease Western Blot Test

The Lyme Disease Western Blot test is typically used as a confirmatory test for people who have had positive results from previous Lyme Disease testing.  This test looks for the presence of both IgG and IgM antigen bands to confirm both recent and previous exposure.  The detection of multiple bands is required for a positive result.  The CDC does not recommend the Western Blot test as a front line screening as some conditions other than Lyme Disease may cause a false positive.        

Lyme Disease is caused by infection with the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi.  It is most commonly spread by the Deer Tick or Black Legged Tick and is the most common tick-borne illness in the United States and Europe.  Lyme disease can be difficult to diagnose because the symptoms are often similar to other afflictions.  While some people will display a distinctive "bulls-eye" rash around the site of the bite, others may experience common flu-like symptoms such as fever, chills, fatigue, and headache.  The ticks which spread the disease are typically very small (the size of a pin head) and many people do not even realize they have been bitten.  If left untreated, Lyme Disease can cause joint pain, numbness in the arms and legs, facial paralysis, Meningitis, heart problems, or memory problems.

Testing for Lyme Disease is advised when a person is experiencing symptoms associated with Lyme, especially if they have had a recent tick bite or have been in an area where Lyme Disease is prevalent.  Testing should also be considered by anyone who has been in an area where Deer Ticks are known to be common.  An initial screening is usually done with an antibody test such as the Total and IgM antibodies test.  A Western Blot test should be ordered as a follow up to a positive result on an antibody test. 

Turnaround time for the Lyme Disease Western Blot test is typically 2-5 business days.

Note: Result turn around times are an estimate and are not guaranteed. Our reference lab may need additional time due to weather, holidays, confirmation/repeat testing, or equipment maintenance.

Incubation Period:

Antibodies for Lyme Disease can appear as early as a few weeks after initial exposure.


Antibiotics can interfere with test results. Please consult your prescribing physician prior to testing.



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