Fact Sheet for Patients: Understanding the TessArray® Resequencing Influenza A Microarray Detection Panel (TessArray RM-Flu) Test Results
The information previously contained on these webpages were authorized under the 2009 H1N1 Influenza Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs). As of June 23, 2010, the EUAs have been terminated and this information is no longer current.
December 16, 2009
A public health emergency has been declared by the Secretary of Health and Human Services because of the outbreak caused by the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. This virus has also been referred to as swine influenza (H1N1) virus. This Fact Sheet will refer to the virus as 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized the emergency use of the TessArray® Resequencing Influenza A Microarray Detection Panel (TessArray RM-Flu) to test for the presence of the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus in clinical respiratory specimens. These specimens should be collected via throat swabs from patients with signs and symptoms of respiratory infection. This authorization will terminate on April 26, 2010, when the emergency declaration is terminated (unless it is renewed), or when the authorization has been revoked, whichever is earlier. The information in this Fact Sheet is the minimum necessary to inform you of the significant known and potential risks and benefits of the emergency use of the TessArray RM-Flu test.
Why was my sample tested using the TessArray RM-FluTest?
Your sample was tested using this test kit, because you may have been infected with the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. This test could help to determine whether you are infected. The results of this test, along with other information, may also help your doctor take better care of you.
What is 2009 H1N1 flu?
The 2009 H1N1 flu is a respiratory disease caused by type A influenza virus. Human cases of 2009 H1N1 influenza virus infection have been identified in the United States and internationally. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that this virus is contagious and can spread from person to person. Like seasonal flu, the 2009 H1N1 flu in humans can vary in severity from mild to severe.
What is the TessArray RM-Flu Test?
The TessArray RM-Flu test is a test performed to detect the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. The FDA has not cleared or approved this test and there are no FDA cleared or approved tests that can identify the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. Based on data submitted to FDA, the FDA has granted an Emergency Use Authorization for the TessArray RM-Flu test.
What are the known and potential risks and benefits of the TessArray RM-Flu Test?
Besides minimal potential discomfort during sample collection, there is a very small risk of a reported incorrect result (see next paragraphs for more information). The results of this test from throat swabs, along with other information, can help your doctor take better care of you. Knowing your test results may help you to prevent the spread of the virus to your family or others.
If this test is positive, does that mean that I have 2009 H1N1 flu?
Yes, although there is a very small chance that this test can give a result that is wrong. There is a small chance of an incorrect positive test result (false positive). Your doctor may decide how to care for you based on the test results along with other factors.
If this test is negative, does that mean that I do not have 2009 H1N1 flu?
Most, but not all, people infected with the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus will have a positive test. Therefore, if your test is negative, something else may be responsible for your illness. However, there is a small chance that this test can give a negative result that is wrong (called a false negative) meaning you could possibly still have 2009 H1N1 flu even though the test is negative. Therefore, while a negative test most likely means you don't have flu, your doctor must consider the test result together with all other aspects of your illness in deciding how to treat you.