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Cytomegalovirus (CMV) Culture

Test ID: 


CPT code:

87252, 87254


Culture, Cytomegalovirus (CMV)

CMV Culture

Clinical Use:

Aid in the diagnosis of disease caused by CMV (eg, viral infections, pneumonia, and organ transplant-related disease)

Test Information:

CMV infections are common and are often asymptomatic, but can be severe and life-threatening in immunocompromised patients including organ recipients and AIDS patients. CMV is the most frequent cause of congenital viral infections in humans and occurs in about 1% of all newborns. Approximately 90% have no clinical symptoms at birth. Ten percent to 20% of these infants will develop complications before school age. Congenital infection may occur as a result of either primary or recurrent maternal infection. Serology for the detection of cytomegalovirus is available.

Specimen Type:

Blood, urine, buffy coat, throat, bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), bronchial washings, cervical, semen, biopsy sources, or bone marrow

Requested Volume: 

10 to 14 mL blood or 4 mL urine

Container Type: 

Two green-top (heparin) tubes; sterile leakproof urine container; viral, Chlamydia, or Mycoplasma culture transport provided by LabCorp, or other appropriate transport medium (throat, cervical, semen, biopsy sources)


Bronchoalveolar lavage: Submit 10 to 50 mL fluid in sterile leakproof container and refrigerate.
Urine: A first morning clean catch urine should be submitted in a sterile screw-cap container. Refrigerate immediately and ship at 4°C. Do not freeze.
Blood/buffy coat/bone marrow: Collect two green-top (heparin) tubes. Transport at room temperature as soon as possible. Do not freeze.
Other: Collect a viral transport for throat, cervical, semen, and biopsy sources. Refrigerate immediately and ship at 4°C. Do not freeze.

Storage Instructions:

Do not freeze. Maintain blood at room temperature; other specimen sources should be refrigerated.

Rejection Criteria

Bacterial swab specimen; specimen received in grossly leaking transport container; dry specimen; specimens submitted in fixative or additive; specimen received in expired transport media or incorrect transport device; inappropriate specimen transport conditions; specimen received after prolonged delay in transport (usually more than 72 hours); specimen stored or transported at room temperature; specimen received frozen; wooden shaft swab in transport device; unlabeled specimen or name discrepancy between specimen and request label

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