Order Titers for School or Work
Why It Is Used
Titer blood tests are used to measure different types of antibodies in the blood. These blood tests are often ordered to show that an individual has had a vaccination for a disease or has had the disease in the past and so does not need to be re-vaccinated. Most schools in the United States require students to provide proof that they are up to date on their vaccinations before they can start attending school. Some companies, especially those in the health care industry, require the same proof from job applicants before they can be officially hired or start working. If vaccination records are unavailable, an individual may have blood titers drawn to show that his or her body is protected against specific infections and other diseases.
How It Works
A titer refers to a type of blood test that assesses the presence of antibodies in the immune system that may have come from a previous vaccination or a history of having a particular disease. There are two different types of immunity that an individual can have in his or her blood. The first type is called an active immunity. There are two ways in which one can build an active immunity to a disease: one can receive a vaccination for the disease or have experienced the disease in the past. Although different bodies respond to these experiences differently in terms of level of antibody production, without one of these two experiences the immunity should not be present at all. Depending on the disease these immunity can remain present in the body over many years and, in some cases, will remain present for the individual’s entire lifetime. This is the type of immunity for which most titer blood tests are ordered. The other type of immunity that an individual can have is called a passive immunity. A passive immunity is transferred from one individual to another. This is most commonly seen when a mother transfers some of her immunity to her child either through blood while the child is in the womb, or through breast milk once the child is born. These passive immunity generally last between a couple of weeks to a couple of months.
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