The ASO titre test (the acronym for antistreptolysin O) is a type of blood test which is used for the diagnosis of strep infection. The immune system produces antibodies to defend against harmful bacteria. The body produces antibodies that are specific to the bacteria against which they are fighting. The toxins are known as streptolysin O cause the body to produce antibodies that can be detected by the ASO titer. The streptolysin O is a toxin that is produced by the group A Streptococcus bacteria. The antistreptolysin O antibodies are produced by the body to counter the infection that is plaguing the body.
When the strep infection steps in, for instance, a strep throat, antibiotics are taken that kill the bacteria. But often symptoms are not experienced by people and the infection is latent. An untreated infection could often lead to future infections. The complications are known as post-streptococcal complications. The ASO titer test would help the doctor to determine if there had been a recent strep infection. This is done by measuring the presence of antistreptolysin antibodies in the blood.
The chikungunya test is taken to find the presence of viral nucleic acids and the virus in the serum of the test. Though mortality rates are rare, chikungunya can cause fever and joint symptoms.
Why would the ASO titer be needed?
The ASO titer would be ordered by the doctor if he finds that you are suffering from post-streptococcal infections. The common complications of strep would include glomerulonephritis, bacterial endocarditis and rheumatic fever. The antistreptolysin antibodies would reach peak levels after about 3 to 8 weeks after the strep infection has struck. The levels might remain high for several months. By checking the antibody levels in the body, the doctor would be able to decide if the symptoms point to a post-streptococcal complication.
How would you prepare for the ASO titer?
The doctor would be able to tell you if there is any special preparation needed for the test. One instance could be abstaining from any food or drink 6 hours before the test. The doctor might recommend stopping medications before going for the test. The ASO antibody levels in the blood are reduced by certain antibiotics and corticosteroids. Confirming the diagnosis might become difficult for the doctor. You should tell the doctor about the medications that you are currently taking. Both prescription and over-the-counter drugs should be discussed. However, you need not stop any medication unless you are explicitly told to do so.
How would the ASO titer test be performed?
The ASO titer test proceeds by taking a blood sample from the victim. The nurse or the professional would do this by inserting a needle in the vein and drawing blood. The blood collected would be sent to the lab for analysis which would be shared by the doctor. The random blood glucose tests are done much in the same way. You can check the random blood glucose levels to ensure that you are staying within the optimum range.
What is meant by the results obtained?
The ASO test value below 200 would be considered normal. However, the test value should be less than 100 for children under the age of 15. If the results show an elevated value, you might be suffering from a post-streptococcal infection. If the test results are negative and the doctor thinks that there is a possibility, a test might be ordered with a second type of antibody. The doctor might ask to repeat the test within about 2 weeks.
The body would produce ASO antibodies within a week. The symptoms might not be due to a Streptococcus infection if both the results are negative. If the results show that the antibodies are increasing, it might be because the infection is recent. The declining levels would mean that the infection is getting better.
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