Monkeypox Test Information

Labcorp is running the FDA-cleared, PCR-based monkeypox (orthopoxvirus) DNA assay developed by the CDC.

Here are some important points about the monkeypox test:


The monkeypox test is qualitative and will indicate a detected, not detected, equivocal or inconclusive result for the presence of DNA from non-variola orthopoxvirus species, of which monkeypox is one. Here is what these results indicate:

  • Detected: A non-variola orthopoxvirus was detected. In addition to monkeypox, there are several viral species in the genus orthopoxvirus. But since there are no current epidemiological concerns about those other viruses, a positive result is presumptive positive for monkeypox. Variola is the virus that causes smallpox. This test will not detect smallpox.
  • Not Detected: This means that an orthopoxvirus was not detected, and the patient is therefore negative for monkeypox.
  • Equivocal: This result can occur when the virus is detected at levels close to the limit of detection of the assay, and a definitive result cannot be determined. For any equivocal result, the CDC recommends that a new patient sample is collected and tested.
  • Inconclusive: This result can occur when the assay control criteria are not met and no virus is detected. The concern here is a poorly collected sample, and the CDC recommends that a new patient sample should be collected and tested.

Monkeypox test details

  • Order code: 140230
  • Turnaround time: 2-3 days
  • Sample collection: Vigorously swab or brush the base of the lesion with a sterile dry polyester, rayon or Dacron swab. Insert the swab into the tube containing UTM or VTM. Carefully break the swab at the scoreline and tightly close the sample. Some UTM kits may contain two swabs; however, only one swab needs to be collected and submitted for testing. If multiple lesions with differing appearances are present, consider submitting an additional UTM/VTM collection, as described above, for each lesion.
  • The test sample must be collected by a clinician at the site where the patient is being seen. Labcorp cannot collect this sample at a patient service center.
  • Shipping and storage: Ship refrigerated or frozen at -20°C; room temperature swabs are not acceptable.