At a Glance
Why Get Tested?
To determine whether or not you have an influenza infection; to help doctor make treatment decisions; to help determine whether or not the flu has spread to your community; to identify the type or strain of flu virus that you have; to monitor the strains of flu virus circulating in the community
When to Get Tested?
If your doctor wants to determine whether your flu-like symptoms are due to flu, another virus, or other causes. Usually only patients with severe infection are tested. When influenza is at a high level in the community, doctors will often diagnose respiratory infections as influenza based on symptoms, without taking a sample to test.
Usually a nose/throat swab or a nasopharyngeal aspirate
Test Preparation Needed?