Proceeds from website advertising help sustain Lab Tests Online. AACC is a not-for-profit organization and does not endorse non-AACC products and services.

Chickenpox and Shingles Tests

Print this article
Share this page:
Also known as: Varicella Zoster Virus; VZV; Herpes Zoster
Formal name: Varicella Zoster Virus Culture; Varicella Zoster Virus by PCR; Varicella Zoster Virus by DFA; Varicella Zoster Virus Antibodies, IgG and IgM

At a Glance

Why Get Tested?

To diagnose, as necessary, a current, recent, or past case of chickenpox or shingles; to demonstrate immunity to the varicella zoster virus (VZV) or the potential for reactivating a VZV infection prior to receiving immunosuppressive drugs

When to Get Tested?

When you have atypical and/or severe symptoms and your doctor wants to distinguish between a VZV infection and another cause; when a doctor wants to check whether or not you are immune to VZV; sometimes prior to an organ transplant or when a child, pregnant woman, or an immune-compromised person has been exposed to someone with chickenpox

Sample Required?

A blood sample drawn from a vein in your arm for VZV antibody testing; to detect the virus itself, a sample of fluid from a blister (vesicle), blood, cerebrospinal fluid, or other body fluid or tissue

Test Preparation Needed?

None