Modern medicine is a highly accurate science which require competent and quick diagnostics. Today it is impossible to imagine accurate diagnostics without laboratory testing methods. Moreover, those methods which were in use 15 years ago are obsolete now, and new ones are used instead of them currently.
Early diagnostics is especially vital in case of pathologies caused by infectious agents. It is necessary to understand that the identification of a causal organism in the earliest possible stage allows starting effective treatment which will be more successful and have less negative impact on a patient. Today PCR (polymerase chain reaction) has become one of the most advanced diagnostics methods.
What is PCR?
First ideas relating to PCR emerged in the late 60s in USA, and this technique has been continuously improved since that time. PCR can be used in diagnostics of almost any bacterial, viral and parasitic diseases. A benefit of this method is that just one microorganism cell or virus particle is enough for the identification of a causal organism.
Moreover, this test is extremely accurate. Such success was achieved because microorganisms are studied on the genetic level as on this very level all information about a causative agent is contained.
In Kyiv first PCR appeared more than 10 years ago but only a few laboratories have upgraded their equipment and technologies since that time, especially in the clinical segment. This fact is proved by the difference in price and time required for testing. At Deva Clinique we have the latest generation equipment in operation which is used for diagnostics by the world’s leading health centers and laboratories.
At the clinic lab testing is carried out in several stages:
- The taken material is heated which leads to partial destruction of a microorganism’s genome;
- A special substance is introduced stabilizing a genome of a causative agent;
- Additional genetic circuits are synthesized;
- Analysis of “accumulated” genetic material;
Of course, this scheme provides only general description but the main testing stages look like this. Despite of an apparent process difficulty its price remains affordable to almost every patient.
Does PCR have advantages?
As it was mentioned before PCR differs from all other methods of infectious diseases diagnostics listed above. For this reason it is used in almost all medicine branches, while gynecology and urology “love” this method particularly as it is a reference method for detecting sexually transmitted infections.
Another main benefit is a low percentage of false-positive and false-negative results. Experience has shown that PCR accuracy reaches 97-98%, and not many testing techniques can demonstrate such result.
Besides, the practitioners note the easiness of material collection because no patient’s additional questions arise regarding the process of PCR testing. Any biological fluid or material can be takes as a source material. In most cases a smear, blood or needle biopsy material is used which is usually painless for a patient and rarely lead to complications.
The possibility of analyzing a causal organism on the genetic level makes it possible to learn its peculiar features. So, for example, microorganisms of one and the same species can have different enzymes or not have them at all which significantly changes the clinical picture of a disease. Knowledge of such specific features by a doctor allows reducing pharmacological load or fully avoiding intake of pharmaceuticals which can be toxic for a patient’s body.
Sure, there are some shortcomings such as a minor possibility of false-positive result. The problem is that after the death of an infectious agent its genetic material circulates in the blood for some time. During PCR dead bacteria’s DNA will confirm disease. If such results are obtained but the clinical picture does not prove them a doctor will order additional tests.
As a whole, nowadays PCR is undoubtedly the best method of diagnostics of infectious diseases, and by means of own state-of-the-art equipment Deva Clinique manages to get the most accurate results.
How are PCR samples collected?
One of the questions asked by the patients most frequently is: “Does it hurt?” When PCR material is collected no one can give a clear answer to this question as everything depends on the collection method.
Unlike any other method, patients practically have no need to prepare themselves for the material collection. You come for a routine examination to your attending physician and all necessary material can be collected directly in a procedure room.
If a patient was provisionally diagnosed hepatitis or any other viral infection then venous blood is taken from the median cubital vein and used as a material for testing. This process is simple and perfectly adjusted at the clinic so pain will be reduced to a minimum.
In gynecology often occurs a necessity to confirm the availability of chlamydia, HPV infection or mollicutes. For accurate diagnostics a smear is taken from female genitalia region observing all asepsis and antisepsis rules. Prior to an examination there is no need to treat this region with disinfectants, and if a treatment is in process it is required to reduce antibiotic intake as much as possible (if permitted by an attending physician) to avoid getting false results.
In urology material collection is carried out by taking a smear from the urethra. During PCR trichomonas, mollicutes, causative agent of syphilis, etc. can be detected. Collection of a smear from the urethra is a quite painful process that scares many men. Despite of all pain the diagnostics data will be as accurate as possible and will allow preventing further disease development.
Benefits of PCR at our clinic
Of course, in Kyiv you can find quite a few laboratories where diagnostics is performed by polymerase chain reaction method but over the last several years our clinic has been chosen by thousands of patients.
Modern technologies allow us to perform PCR testing within a period varying from just a few hours to a day which is much faster than at other labs. So, you can get accurate results on the next day after sample collection. Besides, the availability of our own laboratory at the clinic enables us to reduce the period of material transportation significantly and start testing even before you leave a doctor’s room.
Call us at the phone numbers indicated on our website and choose the best specialists today to make your life full of positive emotions and memories, and we will take care that you will always stay healthy and full of energy!