Bordetella pertussis/parapertussis, PCR (PERPCR)

Test Code

Quest Code

CPT Codes
87798 (x2)

Bordetella pertussis DNA and Bordetella parapertussis DNA

Preferred Specimen
Nasopharyngeal swab or 1 mL nasopharyngeal aspirate

Other Acceptable Specimens
Nasopharyngeal swab submitted in a VCM medium (green-cap) tube or equivalent UTM • Multi Microbe Media (M4) • eSwabs

Nasopharyngeal aspirates: Instill 1-1.5 mL of nonbacteriostatic saline (pH 7.0) into one nostril. Flush a plastic catheter or tubing with 2-3 mL of saline. Insert the tubing into the nostril parallel to the palate. Aspirate nasopharyngeal secretions. Repeat this procedure for the other nostril. Combine aspirates into a sterile vial.

Nasopharyngeal swab: Collection kits using Amies liquid, M4, VCM/UTM are acceptable. Swab tips may be polyester, rayon, nylon flocked. Flexible shafts must be used for proper collection. Accuracy of the test depends on the collection of ciliated epithelial cells material. Half the distance from the nostril to the base of the ear could be used as estimation of the site of collection. Gently insert swab into the nostril. Keep the swab near the septum floor of the nose while gently pushing into the posterior nasopharynx. Rotate swab 2-3 times and hold in place for a few seconds for optimal collection. Collection of both nostrils is recommended but not required.

Transport Container

Transport Temperature
Refrigerated (cold packs)

Specimen Stability
Nasopharyngeal aspirate
Room temperature: 48 hours
Refrigerated: 8 days
Frozen: 30 days

Nasopharyngeal swab
Room temperature: 7 days
Refrigerated: 7 days
Frozen: 30 days

Reject Criteria (Eg, hemolysis? Lipemia? Thaw/Other?)
Collection tubes with Amies gel or charcoal containing media; samples collected using cotton or calcium alginate tipped swabs; rigid shaft swabs

Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)

This test detects but does not distinguish between B. Pertussis and B. Holmesii.

FDA Status
This test was developed and its analytical performance characteristics have been determined by Quest Diagnostics. It has not been cleared or approved by FDA. This assay has been validated pursuant to the CLIA regulations and is used for clinical purposes.

Setup Schedule

Reference Range
B. pertussis DNA Not detected
B. parapertussis DNA Not detected

Clinical Significance
Bordetella pertussis is the cause of whooping cough that may occur in unimmunized individuals. B. parapertussis is a related organism that causes a similar, but milder, disease. Laboratory diagnosis may require both culture and serological confirmation, although culture is difficult.

Performing Laboratory
Quest Diagnostics Nichols Institute-Chantilly VA
14225 Newbrook Drive
Chantilly , VA 20151-2228

The CPT Codes provided in this document are based on AMA guidelines and are for informational purposes only. CPT coding is the sole responsibility of the billing party. Please direct any questions regarding coding to the payor being billed. Any Profile/panel component may be ordered separately. Reflex tests are performed at an additional charge.