I asked my vets for clarification on the significance of these two tests and here is their response.
Here is the information from the Cornell University website about Feline Leukemia stages and testing. If you would like more information, you can go to their link athttp://www.vet.cornell.edu/fhc/brochures/felv.html I understand there are two stages of FeLV infection. What are they? FeLV is present in the blood (a condition called viremia) during two different stages of infection: · Primary viremia, an early stage of virus infection. During this stage some cats are able to mount an effective immune response, eliminate the virus from the bloodstream, and halt progression to the secondary viremia stage. · Secondary viremia, a later stage characterized by persistent infection of the bone marrow and other tissue. If FeLV infection progresses to this stage it has passed a point of no return: the overwhelming majority of cats with secondary viremia will be infected for the remainder of their lives. How is infection diagnosed? Two types of FeLV blood tests are in common use. Both detect a protein component of the virus as it circulates in the bloodstream. · ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) and similar tests can be performed in your veterinarian's office. ELISA-type tests detect both primary and secondary stages of viremia. · IFA (indirect immunofluorescent antibody assay) tests must be sent out to a diagnostic laboratory. IFA tests detect secondary viremia only, so the majority of positive-testing cats remain infected for life. Each testing method has strengths and weaknesses. Your veterinarian will likely suggest an ELISA-type test first, but in some cases, both tests must be performed—and perhaps repeated—to clarify a cat's true infection status. Barb+Smoky the House Puma+El Bandito Malito "My cat the clown: paying no mind to whom he should impress. Merely living his life, doing what pleases him, and making me smile." - Anonymous _______________________________________________ Felvtalk mailing list Felvtalk@felineleukemia.org http://felineleukemia.org/mailman/listinfo/felvtalk_felineleukemia.org