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Scand J Infect Dis. 2003;35(2):107-9.

Comparison of fingerstick versus venipuncture for antibody testing of measles and rubella.

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  • 1Mayo Vaccine Research Group, Mayo Clinic and Foundation, Rochester, Minnesota, 55905, USA.


The aim of this study was to determine whether the fingerstick method of obtaining blood is an acceptable alternative to venipuncture for measuring antibody levels. Blood specimens for antibody determination were obtained from healthy adult subjects by venipuncture with the serum separated from the clot by standard methodology. Fingerstick samples were also obtained by piercing the second or third finger and collected in Microtainer serum separator tubes. The serum was then separated by centrifugation, and all specimens were immediately stored at -80 degrees C until assayed. There was an excellent correlation between sera collected from fingerstick and venipuncture for both measles and rubella antibody assays. For the measles enzyme immunoassay (EIA), 85% of subjects were immune, and the correlation coefficient between the fingerstick and the venipuncture results was 0.98 using least squares linear regression. For the rubella EIA, 100% of subjects were immune, and the correlation coefficient was 0.83. Both methods showed the same number of immunopositive individuals; furthermore, there were no cases of immunity to either virus that were detected in only 1 fluid source. There was no significant difference in antibody levels from blood obtained by either method.

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