A viral culture is a test to find viruses that can cause an
infection. A sample of body fluid or tissue is collected and added to certain cells
used to grow a virus. If no virus infects the cells, the culture is negative. If a
virus that can cause infection infects the cells, the culture is positive. The type
of virus may be identified using a microscope or chemical tests. Sometimes other tests
are done to find the right medicine for treating the infection. This is called sensitivity
testing. Not all types of viruses can be grown in a culture.
A viral culture
may take several weeks to show results.
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
& Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Elizabeth T. Russo, MD - Internal Medicine
This information does not replace the advice of a doctor.
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