Hybrid capture: what it is and how it is done

Hybrid capture is a molecular test capable of diagnosing the HPV virus even though the first symptoms of the disease have not appeared. It allows identifying 18 types of HPV, divided into low-risk group or group A, which do not cause cancer and high-risk group B, which can cause cancer. For the low-risk group, 5 types of HPV are detected and for the high-risk group, 13 types. See what are the symptoms of HPV.

The result of the hybrid capture is given by the RLU / PC ratio that is related to the technique and is positive when the RLU / PCA ratio for group A viruses and / or RLU / PCB for group B viruses is equal to or greater than 1.

The HPV hybrid capture test should be done by all women who have had a change in the Pap smear or who are within the HPV risk group, such as those who have many sexual partners.

How the exam is done

The hybrid capture test is done by scraping a small sample of vaginal mucus in the cervix, vagina or vulva, for example, which is placed in a test tube and sent to the laboratory for analysis. This exam can also be done with anal or buccal secretion. In men, the material used comes from secretions from the glans, urethra or penis.

The collected material is sent to the laboratory, where processing is carried out in semi-automated equipment, which performs the reactions and from the results obtained, releases the laboratory conclusion, which is analyzed by the doctor.

The hybrid capture exam does not hurt, but the person may experience some discomfort at the time of collection.

Preparation of the hybrid capture exam

To perform the hybrid capture exam, the woman must make an appointment with a gynecologist and not have sexual intercourse 3 days before the consultation, not be menstruating and have not used any type of shower or vaginal wash for 1 week, as these factors can alter the fidelity of the exam and give a false-positive or false-negative result.

The preparation of the hybrid capture exam in men also includes not having sex 3 days before and in the case of collection through the urethra, also being at least 4 hours without urinating and in case of collection through the penis, being a minimum of 8 hours without local hygiene.