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The Bartonella IgG antibodies test is designed to detect bartonella henselae/quintana, a pathogenic bacteria, usually transmitted by a cat scratch. Patients with a history of Lyme disease who have incomplete resolution of symptoms should be evaluated for Bartonella infections. Bartonella is an intracellular, gram-negative bacterium that can become chronic.


Bartonellosis is a common name for cat scratch disease, which is a flea-borne disease that carries the Bartonella bacteria. MDL was the first laboratory to detect the presence of Bartonella henselae in the Ixodes scapularis ticks.


The disease is generally mild, the symptoms of bartonellosis typically include swollen lymph nodes and fever. Swelling in the lymph nodes (armpit, neck bone and above the collarbone) may persist for months. Headaches, joint pain, and eye redness may occur.


Bartonella may not present in its usual form when additional infections, such as Lyme disease or Babesia are present. In addition, typical Bartonella lesions are not always seen in patients, therefore, a diagnosis of "fever of unknown origin" should alert a physician to consider Bartonella. It is estimated that approximately 2/3 of the patients with Bartonella have a fever. Involvement of practically every organ has been reported.


There are a variety of symptoms associated with Bartonella, including, but not limited to, fatigue, restlessness, combative behavior, myalgias, malaise, liver and/or spleen involvement, abdominal pain, infectious mononucleosis-like syndrome, granulomatous hepatitis.



Antibodies test:

After a person is infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacterium that causes most cases of Lyme disease, their immune system will recognize the infection and react by producing antibodies against the bacterium. This is usually a two-step process. IgM antibodies are the first wave of attack. They appear within 3-4 weeks after initial infection and hit peak concentrations in about 6-8 weeks. IgM antibodies can persist for several months before they are no longer detectable.


The second phase of response is the production of IgG antibodies. They appear 6-8 weeks after infection and hit their peak concentrations at 4-6 months. Once infected, a person’s IgG level may remain detectable for the rest of his/her life. The spirochetes are tissue-loving organisms; therefore, their presence is transient in blood and other body fluids. One of the most important factors in laboratory tests for Lyme disease is timing the collection of the samples. If you obtain the sample too early or the patient doesn’t have a strong enough immune response, you may get a false negative test result.

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