Mycoplasma pneumoniae is a small bacterium that causes infections in the upper respiratory tract. Mycoplasma can be found in the throat and the upper respiratory tract. The bacteria are transmitted by droplets and have a weak transmission capacity. The incubation period is 1–4 weeks. Children, young adults, and immunodeficient adults are the most likely to become ill. Only 5–10% of those infected develop the illness.
The bacteria usually cause a mild, temporary upper respiratory tract infection (runny nose, cough, sore throat, etc.) that does not require treatment, but in about 10% of cases, the symptoms are prolonged. The illness may include symptoms outside the respiratory tract, such as skin (rash), central nervous system (e.g. inflammation of nerve roots), eyes, joints, heart, or liver.
Mycoplasma pneumoniae cannot be discerned from other upper respiratory tract infections based on the symptoms or traditional inflammation tests alone. However, the cells in the immune system form specific antibodies (MypnAb) that can be measured in a blood test.
When should MypnAb be measured?
The test can be carried out if the upper respiratory tract symptoms are prolonged or coincide with other, partially ambiguous or atypical symptoms in other parts of the body.
Symptoms caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae include:
- Recurring respiratory tract infections
- Prolonged cough
- Runny nose
- A cough that continues for several weeks
- Sore throat
- Muscle pain
What does the MypnAb test measure?
The test indicates whether the person has or has had an illness caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae. The blood can be tested for two types of antibodies: immunoglobulin M (MypnAbM) and immunoglobulin G (MypnAbG). In other words, the test is used to find the body’s response to the potential bacteria, not the bacterium itself.
A recent infection can be diagnosed by testing the blood for immunoglobulin M antibodies. The result is usually positive about one week after the first symptoms.
The immunoglobulin G antibodies do not show until 2–3 weeks after the first symptoms. They are usually measured twice when suspecting a recent infection.
How to interpret the MypnAb test result?
Normally, the result is:
- S-MypnAbG under 10 AU/ml
- S-MypnAbM under 10 Index
The results are provided in a statement.
Please contact your physician or other healthcare professional if you suspect an illness or need help interpreting the results.
Read more about defining reference values.
What can cause elevated levels in the MypnAb?
Elevated MypnAbM levels indicate an acute infection. The IgM antibodies may not be elevated if an adult is experiencing a repeated infection or if a child is experiencing their first infection.
The Ig G antibodies (MypnAbG) remain elevated for years after infection. An individual antibody test does not indicate whether the infection is acute. However, an increase in the value can be determined by carrying our two measurements in the initial stages of infection.
What can cause decreased levels in the MypnAb?
SYNLAB test list: Mycoplasma pneumoniae antibodies (2367 S-MypnAb) https://www2.synlab.fi/laboratoriokasikirja/tutkimuskuvaukset/mycoplasma-pneumoniae/
Lab Tests Online: Mycoplasma https://labtestsonline.org/tests/mycoplasma
Fasting is not required
This examination does not require fasting