Indirect fluorescent antibody testing of ...

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Title Indirect fluorescent antibody testing of cerebrospinal fluid for diagnosis of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis
Author(s) P. C. Duarte, E. D. Ebel, J. Traub-Dargatz, W. D. Wilson, P. A. Conrad, I. A. Gardner
Journal American Journal of Veterinary Research
Date 2006
Volume 67
Issue 5
Start page 869
End page 876
Abstract Objective - To assess the use of CSF testing with an indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT) for diagnosis of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM) caused by Sarcocystis neurona. Sample Population - Test results of 428 serum and 355 CSF samples from 182 naturally exposed, experimentally infected, or vaccinated horses. Procedure - EPM was diagnosed on the basis of histologic examination of the CNS. Probability distributions were fitted to serum IFAT results in the EPM+ and EPM- horses, and correlation between serum and CSF results was modeled. Pairs of serum-CSF titers were generated by simulation, and titer-specific likelihood ratios and post-test probabilities of EPM at various pretest probability values were estimated. Post-test probabilities were compared for use of a serum-CSF test combination, a serum test only, and a CSF test only. Results - Post-test probabilities of EPM increased as IFAT serum and CSF titers increased. Post-test probability differences for use of a serum-CSF combination and a serum test only were ≤19% in 95% of simulations. The largest increases occurred when serum titers were from 40 to 160 and pre-test probabilities were from 5% to 60%. In all simulations, the difference between pre- and post-test probabilities was greater for a CSF test only, compared with a serum test only. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - CSF testing after a serum test has limited usefulness in the diagnosis of EPM. A CSF test alone might be used when CSF is required for other procedures. Ruling out other causes of neurologic disease reduces the necessity of additional EPM testing.

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