Hep B Titer

Useful information about the Hep B Titer


Updated September 25, 2017 By

What is a Hep B titer?

A Hep B titer generally refers to a special test known as the Hepatitis B Surface Antibody test. The Hep B test is frequently used to check the blood for evidence of immunity to Hepatitis B. It is not a shot or vaccination and the analysis needs to be performed by a laboratory. If you need a Hep B titer and want to skip reading the rest of this, we would recommend ordering from Accesa Labs.

Can a Hep B titer refer to any other test?

Infrequently, the Hep B titer can be used to refer to a less common test known as the Hepatitis B Surface Antigen test. This test is sometimes used to check for the presence of the Hepatitis B disease, something that is uncommon in the US and that is typically ordered under the direction of a medical provider.

Why do I need a Hep B titer?

The Hep B titer is used to verify immunity to Hepatitis B. People who will be studying or working in a healthcare setting such as a hospital are frequently asked to get a Hep B titer. Working in a hospital increases the chance that one will get exposed to a patient who has the Hepatitis B disease and the Hep B titer helps demonstrate immunity to Hep B.

Why would I be immune to Hep B?

The Hep B vaccine is a routine part of childhood vaccinations in developing countries. As a result, most people have been immunized to Hep B. For many people, receiving the Hep B vaccine series confers lifelong immunity to the disease.

What's the procedure for getting a Hep B titer?

A Hep B titer is a blood test. To get a Hep B titer, one needs to go to a laboratory or a medical office and get one's blood drawn. Ultimately, a laboratory must process blood to analyze the Hep B titer. Additionally, it is important to know that a Hep B titer requires a lab order from a doctor or other licensed medical provider before it can be performed.

What is measured in a Hep B titer test?

The Hep B titer test measures the blood antibody titer levels of Hep B (typcially the Hep B Surface Antigen as described above). The Hep B titer levels are measured and then compared against generally accepted reference ranges provided by the lab.

How long does it take to get Hep B titer results?

Getting results for a Hep B titer can take 2 days to weeks. Hep B titer results depend on the speed of the lab and the turnaround time of the doctor or medical provider who ordered the titer. It's important to note that the provider will receive Hep B titer results first and then will have to release them to the patient.

How do I interpret Hep B titer results?

The results one gets on their Hep B titer report can be compared against the ranges on the lab report. If the Hep B titer (in this case, the Hep B Surface Antibody) results are positive, that signifies that the person is considered immune to Hep B according to accepted standards. If the Hep B titer results are equivocal or negative, that generally means that the person is not considered immune to Hep B and either needs to repeat the Hep B vaccine series again or sign a waiver (if acceptable) opting out of the vaccinations. Here is a helpful video on interpreting your results:

Will my health insurance pay for my Hep B titer?

Some insurance companies "cover" the Hep B titer but, even if it's considered covered, there may be additional lab bills and co-pays involved. Additionally, before one can get a Hep B titer, one must have a lab order for it from a doctor or licensed medical provider.

What CPT codes are used for the Hep B titer?

CPT codes that might be used for the Hep B titer include 86704 and 86706.

What is Hep B?

Hep B is the short way of referring to a disease known as Hepatitis B. Hep B is caused by the Hep B virus.

Tell me about the Hep B virus.

The Hepatitis B virus, sometimes known as HBV, is a Hepadnaviridae.

What are symptoms of a Hepatitis B infection?

Hepatitis B causes both self-limiting and chronic illnesses. In particular, Hepatitis B affects the liver. When presents, symptoms of a Hepatitis B infection include jaundice (yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes), nausea, fatigue, vomiting or diarrhea, and a general sense of illness.

How is Hep B transmitted?

Hep B can be transmitted by when the blood of an infected person is mixed with the blood of an uninfected person. Hep B can also be transmitted from one person to another during unprotected sexual activity. Oral sex presents minimal to no risk of transmission. Hepatitis B is not typically spread through sharing saliva, food or water. Hep B can be spread from contaminated instruments used to color or pierce the skin (e.g. tattoo).

How soon after I am exposed to Hep B will I show symptoms?

Unfortunately, it takes a while to show signs of a Hep B infection after being exposed to it. For most people, it takes at least 6 weeks before the symptoms show up.

Thanks for reading our overview of the Hep B titer. We hope that you found it helpful.

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