Hepatitis A IgM, Acute or Recent Exposure


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Quest Diagnostics Test Code: 512

It indicates prior or acute infection with, or immunization to, Hepatitis A virus. Immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibodies to Hepatitis A suggest a current, acute or recent Hepatitis A infection.

Hepatitis A virus (HAV) is one of the several viruses that cause hepatitis. It is severely contagious, being spread mostly through infected stool or food/water consumption that is contaminated. Hepatitis is a form of liver inflammation and enlargement that can lead to severe problems. There are two types of antibodies that can be tested for when diagnosing HAV, IgM and IgG. IgM antibodies against HAV are the first antibodies to be produced during the disease duration. They are usually present in the blood for the first week or two before it eventually drops to undetectable levels, after which, IgG antibodies take over their function. Therefore, IgM is especially useful in determining if there is active disease or recent disease, since this is the only time there will be HAV IgM antibodies present in the blood.

This test is performed in following conditions such as:

• Jaundice
• Fever
• Fatigue
• Loss of appetite
• Nausea and vomiting
• Dark urine and/or pale colored stool
• Abdominal pain


Dietary supplements containing biotin (also known as vitamin B7 or B8, vitamin H, or coenzyme R) may interfere in assays and may skew results to be either falsely high or falsely low. For people receiving the recommended daily doses of biotin, draw samples at least 8 hours following the last biotin supplementation. For people on mega-doses of biotin supplements, draw samples at least 72 hours following the last biotin supplementation.


Specimen Collected
  • Blood
Estimated Time Taken

Turnaround time for the Hepatitis A IgM Abs test is typically 1 business day.