What Are The Diagnostic Test For Measles?

Measles is a common illness in children and even adults without adequate measles vaccination. Although this is not too dangerous, if not cared for, the right treatment can lead to serious complications. Therefore, early detection of the disease through measles testing is very important. How is this method done? Let's find out in this article!

Understanding Measles

To understand what measles testing means, let's take a look at measles, the signs that identify the disease, and the complications the disease causes.

Measles is a contagious disease, capable of spreading through the respiratory tract, caused by the measles virus. Measles is most common in the winter-spring season and mainly in young children. But recently, the disease can be seen in adults who have not been vaccinated or have not had enough booster shots.

Measles is a contagious disease

When measles is infected, the characteristic symptoms of leprosy, rash, and fever are characteristic If the condition is prolonged, it can cause complications of pneumonia, diarrhea, keratitis, more dangerous than encephalitis, and life-threatening, especially in young children. Therefore, parents need to pay attention to signs of disease to promptly bring their children to see the pediatrician for early diagnosis.

Typical Measles Clinical Diagnosis

For typical measles, the incubation period lasts from 10-14 days, then the onset of the disease is about 2 – 4 days. When onset, symptoms such as conjunctivitis, high fever, respiratory tract inflammation, and many cases of acute laryngitis.

When observing, it can be easily seen that white particles with small bandages with a small size of only 0.5 – 1mm appear in the mouth area, also known as Koplik beads.

The full-blown phase will last from 2 to 5 days, during this time, the patient will fall into a high fever lasting 3-4 days, accompanied by a systemic rash.

Initially, the rash appears first on the face, with the ears behind the nape, but later spreads gradually to the extremities of the patient. The rash is identified as an inky pink color, but when the skin stretches, the rash in that area disappears. The patient will reduce the fever when the rash is all over.

When entering the recovery phase, the rash on the body will fade and then peel off the scales. If complications do not occur, the patient will recover on their own. There are some cases when patients experience symptoms of cough lasting 1-2 weeks and then disappear.

Diagnosis of Measles In A Atypical Form

Atypical measles is a rash that occurs that does not follow conventional clinical diagnoses, so the patient often does not pay attention, making the illness more severe.

The atypical clinical manifestations include low-grade fever, mild long-term inflammation, mild rash, and good overall condition. It is for this reason that it is easy for patients to ignore the symptoms of the disease or to know that this is measles, causing the disease to spread into an epidemic.

In some cases, patients suffer from persistent high fever, body aches, pneumonia, and a rash but not obvious.

What Is The Diagnostic Test For Measles?

How to test for measles is a common question among many patients when learning about this test. Currently, there are many methods of testing for fibrosis, but there are three commonly used tests: Measles IgM, Measles IgG, and Measles PCR.

Methods of diagnosis of measles

Measles IgM Test

  • The Measles IgM test has a high sensitivity of up to 96%.
  • The specificity of the Measles IgM test is 99%.

Sampling: Does a blood test detect measles? For Measles IgM Test will take a sample of the patient's serum or plasma (blood test) and then put it in a test tube containing the Heparin anticoagulant and send it to a testing center for analysis.

The Measles IgM test, it is capable of detecting the presence of an IgM antibody in the sample, which is an antibody that is specific to the measles virus.

Normally, IgM antibodies will appear about 4-5 days from the time of the patient's rash, then disappear from week 7 onwards and when entering week 8, this antibody will completely disappear.

If the Measles IgM measles test is positive then the doctor can know the severity of the illness the person is having.

Measles IgG Test

  • The Measles IgG test has a high sensitivity of up to 96%.
  • The specificity of the Measles IgG Test is 99%.
The Measles IgG test is highly sensitive to help detect measles

Sampling: Measles IgG test will need to take a sample of the patient's serum or plasma, then put it in a test tube containing the prepared Heparin anticoagulant to send to a testing center for analysis.

The difference between IgG antibodies compared with IgM antibodies is the highest time to appear after 4 weeks of onset and persists for a long time after infection.

If the results are tested for the first time, the Measles IgG Test may need to be repeated in about 2 weeks. This test will help determine the growth of antibody titers. In case this value is 4 times higher than the test value for the first time, it will bring a high value in diagnosis.

Measles PCR Test

The Measles PCR test will take a sample by Using a throat swab to take a sample of fluid over a period of 1-3 days from the day the rash appears.

Real-time PCR (RT-PCR) is a biotechnological method implemented for the purpose of identifying measles viruses. In addition, the Measles PCR test can also detect measles RNA at the incubation stage and has a high diagnostic value even when the IgG and IgM antibodies have not appeared.

 What is the diagnostic test for measles?

The respective sensitivity to quantification and use of the Measles PCR gene is as follows:

  • Gene F (fusion): 93%.
  • Gene N (nucleoprotein): 100%
  • Gene H (hemagglutinin): 82%

Particularly for the specificity of all the above tests are 100% absolute.

Differential Diagnosis Methods Of Measles

Diagnosis of measles with Rubella disease

Mumps test for rubella is performed in cases where the clinical symptoms have a messy order of the rash and less inflammation of the logistics occurs.

The test method is performed as follows: Quantitative testing of rubella IgM or IgG antibodies through 3 methods: Elisa, Abbott, and Cobas.

Differential diagnosis of Enterovirus type 71 (EV71) infection

In case the patient has clinical symptoms such as An unordered rash accompanied by a gastrointestinal disturbance.

Test methods include:

EV71 rapid test: This is done for the purpose of quickly determining the presence of EV171 antibodies in the patient's body. However, this test still has the drawback of the relatively high rate of false positives.

RT-PCR test EV71: This is a fast and highly accurate test, widely used in the majority of specialized laboratories.

Differential diagnostic methods for measles

Disease caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae

The clinical symptoms of Mycoplasma pneumonia are similar to measles, so it is easy to cause confusion such as low-grade fever, headache, atypical pneumonia.

Test methods used are Serum test Mycoplasma pneumoniae IgA, IgG, IgM.


Malaria has the typical clinical symptoms of an insect bite.

The method of conducting the test is as follows:

  • Rickettsia test using PCR gene amplified molecular biology method.
  • Quick test Rickettsia.

Diagnosis of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection

When infected with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) will cause clinical symptoms such as Mononucleosis.

The test method performed is:

  • Determination of the amount of EBV DNA in the blood by RT-PCR method.
  • Elisa technique is capable of detecting antibodies IgA, IgM, IgG, and also EBV shell antigen.

Testing For Measles At Home

Where to test for measles? You should go to medical centers, large reputable hospitals to conduct tests, ensure accuracy and get the best advice from your doctor.

Maybe home measles testing is also a concern for many people because of its convenience, less time to travel when the health is not good, and many other reasons.

Currently, there are many hospitals and testing centers that provide home measles sampling services as follows:

Customers will not need to go to the hospital but can call the hotline or register online via the website to schedule a home measles sample.

After receiving information, making an appointment, a medical professional will come to the customer's home to collect samples in accordance with the hospital procedure, ensure accuracy, safety, quickly and then bring the sample to the examination center for analysis.

Get tested for measles at home

How long does it take to get the results of the measles test? Depending on the center where the test is being performed, the timing of the results will vary. If the fastest, the results will be available after a few hours with high accuracy sampling.

How do get the results? Customers also do not need to go to the hospital to collect samples but can receive a variety of formats to best suit their needs and the services that the test site provides such as returning results over the phone, at home, or on the website …

In addition, when the results are available, there will be medical specialists and doctors calling for online consultation, giving the most appropriate treatment and care direction for each specific case.

If you need more information related to measles testing, you can also call hotline 19001717 for the most detailed, detailed advice and you have appointments that can be made quickly through the hotline.

Thus, measles is a contagious disease that, although not too dangerous, should not be taken lightly because improper care will cause serious health effects. Therefore, proactive testing for measles is the way to detect early and correctly the disease to have the most effective care and treatment.

For more information about our test menu and price list, please click here.

The site cannot and does not contain medical advice. The medical information is provided for general informational and educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice. Accordingly, before taking any actions based upon such information. We encourage you to consult with the appropriate professionals.

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