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Test Code MEPNL Meningitis/Encephalitis Panel, PCR, CSF

Important Note

Bacterial culture and Gram stain must always be ordered concurrently, using order code SFC “Spinal Fluid Culture”.

This test is not appropriate for the diagnosis of infections associated with CNS hardware/shunt infections.  For these cases, please order SFC “Spinal Fluid Culture” and other tests as appropriate. 

This panel does not test for TB or other mycobacteria, or for fungi other than Cryptococcus, so separate tests for AFB and/or fungal culture must be ordered if required.  

Testing for cell count, protein, and glucose must still be ordered separately.

Biohazard Infectious

Additional Codes

Bacterial culture and Gram stain must always be ordered concurrently, using order code SFC “Spinal Fluid Culture”.

 

Specimen Type

Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF)

Container

Sterile container

Preferred Volume

1 mL

Mimimum Volume

1 mL

Offsite Collection Instructions

See UCMC Collection Instructions

UCMC Collection Instructions

Specimen Source: CSF, DOES NOT INCLUDE CSF shunt, ventricular fluid.
Specimen Collection: Skin decontamination with Chloraprep.
Specimen Transport: Immediate, no refrigeration.
 

See Microbiology Specimen Collection:

  • See category “CSF”, Table 1 BACTERIOLOGY, CHLAMYDIA, MYCOLOGY, MYCOBACTERIOLOGY (AFB), VIROLOGY

Availability

24/7

Turnaround Time

Testing is performed 24/7. Results will be available within 3 hours of receipt in Clinical Microbiology Laboratory.

Test Usage

The FilmArray meningitis/encephalitis panel is a multiplex PCR test capable of qualitative detecting DNA or RNA of 14 pathogens (bacteria, yeast, and viruses) from a single CSF specimen. 

 

The targets detected by the ME Panel include: 

Bacterial: E. coli K1 serotype, S. agalactiae, L. monocytogenes, N. meningitidis, S. pneumoniae, H. influenza

Viral:  CMV, enterovirus, HHV-6, HSV-1, HSV-2, human parechovirus, VZV

Yeast: Cryptococcus neoformans/gattii

 

 

Test Methodology

The FilmArray meningitis/encephalitis panel is a multiplex PCR test capable of qualitative detecting DNA or RNA of 14 pathogens (bacteria, yeast, and viruses) from a single CSF specimen.

Additional Information

Rejection criteria:  CSF shunt, ventricular fluid

 

Samples that test positive for Cryptococcus will automatically have an order added for Cryptococcal Ag by Latex (order code CRYP).

CPT Code

87483

Test Includes

This panel detects multiple viral, bacterial, and fungal pathogens by PCR from a single CSF specimen with a rapid turnaround time. 

 

The targets detected by the ME Panel include: 

Bacterial: E. coli K1 serotype, S. agalactiae, L. monocytogenes, N. meningitidis, S. pneumoniae, H. influenza

Viral:  CMV, enterovirus, HHV-6, HSV-1, HSV-2, human parechovirus, VZV

Yeast:  Cryptococcus neoformans/gattii

Test Limitations

The detection of microbial DNA or RNA is dependent upon proper sample collection, handling, transportation, storage, and preparation. There is a risk of false-negative results due to the presence of strains with sequence variability or genetic rearrangements in the target regions of the assays. This test is not recommended as a test of cure. The presence of blood in the sample may interfere with testing.

Reference Range

Negative

Critical Results

If positive, Microbiology lab will notify physician