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What is the TORCH test used for?
Transmissible diseases can occur in women who have conceived or in infants at birth. TORCH test is used to detect these types of torch infections which can lead to illness and congenital abnormalities.
The TORCH Test is used
- To identify and determine TORCH pathogens in an expecting mother usually in the first three months of pregnancy or in a woman who wishes to become pregnant.
- To screen a woman for infections who have a history of recurrent pregnancy loss.
- To evaluate TORCH diseases in the baby immediately after birth.
What is included in the TORCH test?
The body’s immune system produces IgG and IgM antibodies against diseases caused by TORCH infections. TORCH test detects the presence of these antibodies in the blood against Toxoplasma, Cytomegalovirus, Rubella and Herpes Simplex Virus. When a person gets exposed to the virus IgM is seen in the blood in the early stages and also can be detected in the blood sample.
IgG is seen in the blood after a few weeks and will remain in the body for a prolonged period. Thus, the body would have become immune to this virus and protects the body for a prolonged period from any further disease from the same virus.
TORCH panel tests include:
- TORCH panel – IgG
- TORCH panel IgM
- TORCH 10 (serum)
Procedure for TORCH test
- This test requires a blood serum sample which is collected from a vein, usually from the arm. It should only take a few minutes to collect the sample.
- A topical antiseptic is applied to the inside of your elbow to clean a small area of your skin. An elastic band is then wrapped around your upper arm to apply pressure to find a vein.
- Once a vein is seen, a sterile needle is inserted to draw blood into a small tube.
- When the needle is inserted, you may feel a sting in your arm; however, the pain will reduce immediately.
- After sample collection, a small band aid will be applied at the procedure site.
- The sample is labeled and sent to our accredited labs of your choice (made during the booking) for further processing.
- With the help of state-of-the-art technology, the blood sample will be analysed by the lab technician.
- Once the analysis is completed, the blood test results will be available on the MFine app within the next 24-48 hours.
How to prepare for the TORCH test?
The TORCH test is a simple blood test and does not require any special requirements or fasting before the test. Samples can be taken as per the convenience of the patient. Inform the doctor about any prescription or over-the-counter medications you are using. Certain medications can interfere with TORCH testing.
Things to consider after the TORCH test is complete
Once the test results are available, a doctor will review your test reportand discuss the diagnosis with you. If you are tested positive, they will recommend and guide you through treatment and any subsequent follow-up. Usually, antibiotics are prescribed to treat your infections. Please do not attempt to self-diagnose your medical condition.
*What types of infection can the TORCH test detect?
- Toxoplasmosis: This is an infectious disease caused by a parasite known as Toxoplasma gondii and passed from an expecting lady, often in the first three months to the fetus through the placenta. Toxoplasmosis is caused mainly by eating uncooked eggs or meat and handling the feces of cats. This infection can cause spontaneous abortion, impairment of vision, convulsions, deafness, or other congenital birth defects.
- Rubella: Rubella virus causes rubella. Rubella is also known as German measles. If the virus attacks the fetus in the uterus, it may cause defects present during birth. This includes heart abnormalities, brain damage, visual and hearing impairment, etc.
- Cytomegalovirus also called CMV can travel through the placenta to a child during the prenatal period, or during breastfeeding after birth. It may cause hearing impairment, reduced mental growth, convulsions, which can be seen in the infant.
- Herpes Simplex Virus, both herpes Simplex 1 and herpes simplex 2 is caused by the herpes virus. This virus can be passed on to the newborn baby in the uterus or at the time of childbirth through the vaginal canal if there are any vaginal lesions. Both herpes infections in infants are severe and affect major organs in the body, causing pulmonary disorders, convulsions, and brain and spinal cord damage.
How much does the TORCH test cost?*
Through the MFine app, you can now book TORCH tests (both IgG and IgM) from certified lab partners in your city.
Reputed certified lab partners of MFine for TORCH tests are Aster Labs, Aarthi Diagnostics etc. The average cost of a TORCH test is typically between Rs.2800 to Rs.3600.
However, this cost might vary based on location, time, and your preferred lab partner.
How long does it take to get the results for the TORCH test?
You can expect to get the results for the TORCH test within 24 to 48 hours after the sample is collected. However, in certain cases, depending on the location, medical advice, and preferred lab partner, it may take longer.
What do abnormal TORCH test results indicate?
TORCH screen results show whether you have an infection now or had one in the past.
Positive IgM indicates some recent infection and if positive in pregnant women, it needs further evaluation. A negative result may indicate no previous or recent infection.
Positive IgG result indicates a previous infection.
Positive IgG and IgM results indicate a recent, ongoing infection.
It is important to understand the TORCH infection causes if you are pregnant and in case of any suspected symptom consult your doctor immediately. The chances of passing it to your baby could be reduced by timely action.
Disclaimer: Please consult with your doctor for interpreting the test reports.
Is the TORCH test definitive?
TORCH screening is a disease-specific test based on the history of the mother and the neonatal clinical symptoms. The organisms may be present in the body without any symptoms and require screening.
If a mother or the newborn baby tests positive for the antibodies the doctor will recommend more tests to check for the underlying infection.
How to read the TORCH report?
The results are provided as negative or positive indicating the absence or presence of IgG and IgM antibodies for each of these diseases.
- The normal or negative result of a TORCH test report indicates the absence of antibodies. If both IgG and IgM results show negative, it suggests that there is no past or present infection.
- A positive result of a TORCH test report indicates the presence of antibodies. If the test is positive for a certain disease, the presence of IgG and IgM antibodies will be seen in blood against that disease.
- A positive IgM result and a negative IgG result indicate a recent infection. IgM positivity indicates a recent infection and the need for appropriate treatment. If IgM is found to be positive, additional testing may be required.
- A positive IgG result and a negative IgM result indicate a previous infection. A positive IgG result indicates a previous infection (except HIV) and previous vaccination, whereas a negative IgM result suggests past disease for the virus that may be already treated or vaccinated against that specific disease.
- Positive IgG and IgM results indicate a present disease that is in progress.
- The TORCH Profile test is done to evaluate the disease, and the results should be further confirmed by more tests suggested by your consulting doctor.
Why book a TORCH test?
This test is done mainly to
- To detect and screen for an infection caused by the TORCH group of microorganisms, particularly in a pregnant woman in her first trimester or who exhibits symptoms of the aforementioned illnesses. Screening early is important to prevent infections from being passed on to the foetus.
- To diagnose the type of infections in the woman who is having a miscarriage, women who are experiencing multiple abortions or are unable to conceive.
- As part of a pregnant woman’s antenatal check-up.
- To help in the early detection of possible infections when a baby is born with congenital abnormalities like mental retardation, hearing abnormalities, heart abnormalities which could be due to TORCH infections
TORCH test at home – how does it work?
The TORCH test is just like any other blood test. A lab technician visits your home when you book your tests through the MFine app. The lab technician first cleans the arm and then inserts a syringe into a vein. The required amount of blood is then taken into a vial. The lab technician then removes the needle and places cotton wool or a bandage over the prick.
Are there any risks involved with the TORCH test?
The TORCH blood test is a relatively safe procedure with minor side effects. The following are some possible side effects of the CPK test:
- Minor bruises or soreness may form at the site of injection. By applying pressure to the affected area for several minutes, you can reduce the likelihood of bruising.
- The vein may become swollen after the blood sample is taken in rare cases. This condition is known as phlebitis. This can be treated with a warm compress many times per day.
- Some people may experience dizziness, fainting, or infection at the puncture site.
What can affect the results of the torch test?
Any over-the-counter medications or current medications you are having may have an impact on the results. Check with your doctor to see if you need to discontinue any current medications.
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Frequently Asked Questions | FAQs
Is the lab technician coming for the TORCH test sample collection vaccinated?
Yes. Our lab technicians are fully vaccinated. Further, they also ensure safety throughout by wearing a mask, gloves, and frequently sanitizing themselves during the sample collection.
Does MFine provide the interpretation for the results along with the reports?
Yes, MFine provides the interpretation for the result along with the reports. You can also avail a free medical consultation with a doctor to understand your reports accurately. The doctor will also advise and prescribe medicines, if required, based on the results.
How can I download my TORCH test report?
- Login to MFine
- Go to your profile
- Click on Attachment and Reports
- Click on Lab Report
- Download the report
Are there any discount offers running on the TORCH test?
Usually you can avail up to 50% discount on the TORCH test through MFine. However, the discount and test price may vary based on lab partner and location.
What Is TORCH Syndrome?
The TORCH syndrome results from one of the infections crossing the placenta from an infected pregnant mother.
Why does the baby in the uterus catch TORCH infections?
The mother contracts the infectious disease and transmits it to the baby through her bloodstream, the baby develops a TORCH infection in the uterus. The developing fetus’s immune system is not strong enough to fight off infection permanently, it remains in the body, making the infant susceptible to illness.
Can I avoid the test if I do not have any symptoms?
The only way to find out if you have any of these infections is to have them tested. While all of these infections can cause symptoms, the lack of symptoms is not a reliable indicator that you are infection-free.
Is the TORCH test necessary?
It is important to understand the TORCH infection causes if you are pregnant and in case of any suspected symptom consult your doctor immediately. The chances of passing it to your baby could be reduced by timely treatment.
Can this test be done during pregnancy?
Yes, it is mostly recommended during the first trimester of pregnancy.
My reports say I am rubella IgG positive. Can I plan for my pregnancy now?
IgG positive means you have had a recent infection, have been vaccinated, or are immune to the disease. Consult your doctor, who may suggest repeating the test after some duration, after which you can plan for pregnancy.
Disclaimer: The content is uniquely informative and is meant for educational use. Kindly use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified or registered healthcare provider.