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Antibody, Treponema pallidum, total and rapid plasma reagin (RPR), immunoassay, qualitative

CPT4 code

Name of the Procedure:

Antibody, Treponema pallidum, total and rapid plasma reagin (RPR), immunoassay, qualitative


This procedure involves blood tests used to screen for syphilis. Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection caused by the bacterium Treponema pallidum. The tests detect antibodies produced in response to the infection.


  • To diagnose or confirm a syphilis infection.
  • To monitor the effectiveness of treatment for syphilis.


  • Symptoms of syphilis (e.g., sores, rash, fever).
  • A positive initial screening test for syphilis.
  • Routine screening for pregnant women or individuals with a high risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs).


  • No specific preparation is typically required.
  • Follow any specific instructions provided by your healthcare provider.

Procedure Description

  1. A healthcare professional will draw a blood sample from a vein in your arm using a needle.
  2. The blood sample is sent to a laboratory.
  3. In the lab, the sample is tested using immunoassay techniques to detect antibodies against Treponema pallidum.
  4. Another test, the rapid plasma reagin (RPR), is performed to check for non-specific antibodies that indicate an active syphilis infection.


The blood draw takes about 5 to 15 minutes. Results from the lab can typically be available within a few days.


The blood sample is usually collected in a healthcare provider’s office, clinic, or laboratory.


A phlebotomist or nurse will draw the blood sample. Lab technicians will perform the tests in a laboratory.

Risks and Complications

  • Minor discomfort or bruising at the site where the blood is drawn.
  • Rarely, infection or excessive bleeding.


  • Early detection and diagnosis of syphilis.
  • Timely treatment can prevent severe health complications associated with untreated syphilis.


  • No specific recovery process is required after the blood draw.
  • Follow any instructions provided by your healthcare provider.


  • Other blood tests for syphilis, such as the fluorescent treponemal antibody absorption (FTA-ABS) test.


  • Different tests might offer additional confirmation if results are unclear.


  • Some alternative tests may be more expensive or take longer to provide results.

Patient Experience

  • You may feel a brief sting or pinch when the needle is inserted to draw blood.
  • Minor bruising or soreness at the site of the needle insertion is possible but typically resolves quickly.

Medical Policies and Guidelines for Antibody, Treponema pallidum, total and rapid plasma reagin (RPR), immunoassay, qualitative

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