Rubella Antibodies, IgM

CPT: 86762
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  • German Measles Specific IgM

Expected Turnaround Time

1 - 3 days

Related Documents

Specimen Requirements




0.5 mL

Minimum Volume

0.2 mL


Red-top tube or gel-barrier tube

Storage Instructions

Refrigerate. Specimen is stable for two days at room temperature and for seven days refrigerated. For storage longer than seven days, freeze the specimen.

Causes for Rejection

Hemolysis; lipemia; gross bacterial contamination

Test Details


For the in vitro detection of IgM antibodies specific for rubella. IgM antibodies are associated with acute viral infections. IgM detection is useful in the following situations: evidence of infection can be obtained from only one acute phase specimen if the IgM results are positive; the IgM test can also be used to differentiate between primary infection and re-exposure. Rubella-specific IgM is found in virtually all infected patients by three weeks postdevelopment of a rash. Rubella-specific IgM is also found in 80% of postvaccination patients by three weeks. Congenitally infected infants will show an IgM response at 2 to 12 weeks postnatally.


The absence of IgM at birth does not rule out congenital rubella since the frequency of IgM detection in cord blood decreases as the time between conception and fetal infection increases. Acquired rubella infection in infants is rare but must be considered if the blood is positive for IgM but was not obtained during the immediate postnatal period. Rubella-specific IgM may persist for months after an acute infection and, possibly, after vaccination as well. False-positive rubella IgM responses have been reported following mononucleosis, parvovirus B19 infections, and possibly other herpes-type viral infections. False-positive rubella IgM responses have also been reported in pregnant women. These reactions are usually accompanied by false-positive reactions to other viruses (eg, CMV and measles).


Chemiluminescent immunoassay (CLIA)

Reference Interval

• Negative: <20.0 AU/mL

• Equivocal: 20.0−24.9 AU/mL

• Positive: >24.9 AU/mL


Grangeot-Keros L, Pilliot J, Daffos F, Forestier F. Prenatal and postnatal production of IgM and IgA antibodies to rubella virus studied by antibody capture immunoassay. J Infect Dis. 1988 Jul; 158(1):138-143. 3392411
Matter L, Gorgievski-Hrisoho M, Germann D. Comparison of four enzyme immunoassays for detection of immunoglobulin M antibodies against rubella virus. J Clin Microbiol. 1994 Sep; 32(9):2134-2139. 7814536
Morgan-Capner P. Diagnosing rubella. Br Med J. 1989 Aug 5; 299(6695):338-339 (review). 2506961
Munro ND, Wild NJ, Sheppard S, Smithells RW, Hambling MH. Fall and rise of immunity to rubella. Br Med J. 1987 Feb 21; 294(6570):481.3103734


Order Code Order Code Name Order Loinc Result Code Result Code Name UofM Result LOINC
096537 Rubella Antibodies, IgM 5335-5 096539 Rubella Antibodies, IgM AU/mL 5335-5

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