What is the role of serologic testing in the diagnosis and treatment of leptospirosis?

Updated: Jul 08, 2021
  • Author: Sandra G Gompf, MD, FACP, FIDSA; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Leptospires grow slowly in culture, and recovery rates are low. Serologic tests are available only in specialized laboratories, and the sensitivity of acute serologic tests is low. Consequently, those tests should not be the basis on which treatment is initiated. In a patient with compatible symptoms and a plausible exposure history, empiric therapy should be started.


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