anti-HBC IgM (serum on lab card )
IgM class antibodies to HBcAg
True Hepatitis diagnosis requires multiple tests. Interpretation remains difficult and it is often not clear whether the person in question is immune (has experienced infection). The detection of anti-HBc IgM indicates contact with hepatitis B viruses. For further differentiation, at least anti-HBc IgG and HBs antigen should be determined. A single positive anti-HBc IgM result is often not specific enough.
Sometimes this test is requested for example by a doctor performing fertility treatment.
A positive result is an indication of recent infection or
flare-up in chronic infection; May also be low positive in chronic infection.
Anti-HBc (IgG and IgM) antibodies are the body's first response to infection with the hepatitis B virus (HBV). These antibodies are directed against a part of the HBV called the nucleus. IgM-anti-HBc antibodies appear shortly after the symptoms and occurrence of HBsAg. They last 4 to 8 months (sometimes up to 2 years) and are then replaced by IgG-anti-HBc antibodies. IgM-anti-HBc results should be interpreted in light of HBsAg and anti-HBs results, among others.
A negative IgM anti-HBc result may indicate that there is no recent or previous HBV infection (negative HBsAg, anti-HBs, and IgG anti-HBc) or that the person is in the acute phase of the disease and does not yet have defenses (positive HBsAg, negative anti-HBs) or that the virus has been reactivated in a chronic carrier. IgM (and IgG) anti-HBc will also be negative in a successfully vaccinated person.
A positive IgM-anti-HBc result indicates that the body is beginning to defend itself against HBV. Combined with a negative HBsAg, the recovery period has begun and the IgG-anti-HBc test is expected to become positive soon. If HBsAg is still positive, you are either still in the acute phase of the disease and the combination of positive HBsAg/IgG anti-HBc/negative anti-HBs may indicate an active chronic infection.