In this article, we will discuss the Diagnosis of Rabies. So, let’s get started.
The diagnosis of rabies is generally made on clinical ground supported by investigations:
1. Serum neutralizing antibodies to rabies virus are diagnostic in an unimmunized patient. The presence of rabies virus-specific antibodies in CSF suggest rabies encephalitis regardless of immunization status
2. RT-PCR amplification to detect rabies virus RNA is highly sensitive and specific. This technique can detect virus in fresh saliva sample, skin, CSF and brain tissue
3. Direct fluorescent antibody testing is highly sensitive and specific. In skin biopsy rabies virus antigen can ve detected in cutaneous nerves at the base of hair follicles
4. MRI shows non-enhancing ill defined hyperdense changes in brainstem, hypothalamus and subcortical regions.
5. Confirmation is done by classical Negri bodies at postmortem examination of brain.