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Hepatitis C Viral Load

Alias: HCV, Hep C

Discipline: Virology

Test information: The presence of Hepatitis C RNA in blood indicates active viral replication and therefore active Infection. This test is used to monitor response to treatment in known positive Hepatitis C patients. Newly reactive Hepatitis C antibody samples are tested locally for Hepatitis C RNA and if applicable sent to the reference laboratory for genotyping. It is also available for needle stick recipients, 6 weeks post exposure incident.

Availability: Available locally Monday - Friday during routine hours: 08:45 - 17:15.

Turnaround Time: Same Day

Specimen Type(s)
  • Clotted blood;
Other Acceptable Specimen Type(s)
Specimen Container - Adult
  • Gold Top SST BD;
Specimen Container - Paediatric
  • N/A;
  • Hepatitis C Virus RNA;
Part of a test profile?
Volume (min) of sample to be sent to laboratory
Clotted Blood: 10 - 20mL
Please note this test requires a minimum of 1 mL of serum to perform.
Patient Preparation, Sample Handling and Transport
  • Minimum-clotting time 30 minutes.
  • Specimens should be transported to the laboratory as soon as possible.
  • Outside of normal hours samples should be refrigerated (2 °C to 8 °C).
  • Clotted blood samples are stable up to 24 hours at 15 °C - 30 °C and up to 72 hours at 2 °C - 8 °C.
Maximum add on time
72 hours
Units and Reference Ranges / Interpretation

Units: IU/mL

Linear Range: 10 to 100,000,000 IU/mL

Limit of Quantification: 10 IU/mL

Limit of Detection: Please contact laboratory, this varies by genotype.

UKAS number
UKAS accredited test?

If you have any queries about a test or results interpretation please contact us.

Last updated: 30-05-2023