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Lab Test Dictionary

Bordetella pertussis/parapertussis DNA, Qualitative, RT-PCR (11365)


Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR)


Whooping Cough

Specimen Type

See Collection Instructions

Performing Lab

Quest Diagnostics San Juan Capistrano

Epic ID

Other Reference Test

Lab Test Days


Standard TAT

1-2 Days

Collection Information

Specimen Required

0.3-1 mL Nasopharyngeal Aspirate

Container Type

Sterile Container

Collection Instructions

Nasopharyngeal swab collected in a Liquid Amies collection tube, VCM medium (green-cap) tube or equivalent UTM or in a Liquid Amies (eSwab) collection tube is also acceptable. Nasopharyngeal aspirates: Instill 1-1.5 mL of nonbacteriostatic saline (pH 7.0) into one nostril. Flush a plastic catheter or tubing with 2-3 mL of saline. Insert the tubing into the nostril parallel to the palate. Aspirate nasopharyngeal secretions. Repeat this procedure for the other nostril. Combine aspirates into a sterile vial. Nasopharyngeal swab: Collection kits using Amies liquid, M4, VCM/UTM are acceptable. Swab tips may be polyester, rayon, nylon flocked. Flexible shafts must be used for proper collection. Accuracy of the test depends on the collection of ciliated epithelial cells material. Half the distance from the nostril to the base of the ear could be used as estimation of the site of collection. Gently insert swab into the nostril. Keep the swab near the septum floor of the nose while gently pushing into the posterior nasopharynx. Rotate swab 2-3 times and hold in place for few seconds for optimal collection. Collection of both nostrils is recommended but not required.

Processing Information - Lab Use Only

Transport Temperature


Specimen Stability

Room Temp: 48 Hours (7 Days for N/P swab); Refrigerated: 8 Days (7 Days for N/P swab); Frozen: 30 Days

Rejection Criteria

Collection tubes with Amies gell or charcoal containing media; Samples collected using cotton or calcium alginated tipped swabs; Rigid shaft swabs

Test Volume Required

1 mL Nasopharyngeal Aspirate

Minimum Test Volume

0.3 mL Nasopharyngeal Aspirate

Processing Instructions

Indicate source in comments, on specimen and on batch sheet.

CPT Codes

87798 (x2)