Lab Test

Hepatitis B Surface Antibody (aHBs)

HBsAb, Antibody to Hepatitis B Surface Antigen, Anti-HBs, Hepatitis Bs Antibody, Hepatitis B Surface Antibody (HBsAb)

Test Codes

Antrim #30940, EPIC: LAB5221, HBSAB



Specimen Collection Criteria

Collect (preferred specimen): One Gold-top SST tube. (Minimum Whole Blood: 4.0 mL)
Also acceptable: One Lavender-top EDTA tube. (Minimum Whole Blood: 3.0 mL)

Physician Office/Draw Specimen Preparation

  • Let SST specimens clot 30-60 minutes then immediately centrifuge to separate serum from cells. Refrigerate (2-8°C or 36-46°F) the centrifuged SST tube within two hours of collection. (Minimum: 2.0 mL)
  • Centrifuge Lavender-top tube immediately to separate plasma from cells. Transfer plasma to a plastic transport tube and refrigerate (2-8°C or 36-46°F) within twelve hours of collection. (Minimum: 2.0 mL) 

Preparation for Courier Transport

Transport: Centrifuged SST tube or plasma aliquot, refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F). (Minimum: 2.0 mL serum or plasma)

Rejection Criteria

  • Hemolyzed specimens.
  • Severely lipemic specimens.
  • Red-top tubes with serum not separated from cells within two hours of collection.
  • Lavender-top tubes with plasma not separated from cells within twelve hours of collection. 

In-Lab Processing

Let SST specimens clot 30-60 minutes. Centrifuge SST, Lavender-top tubes, or Microtainers® to separate serum or plasma from cells. Deliver immediately to the appropriate testing station.


Specimen Stability for Testing:

Centrifuged SST Tubes and Microtainers® with Separator Gel
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 2-4 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 7 days
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): Unacceptable

Red-top Tubes and Microtainers® without Separator Gel
Room Temperature (20-25°C or 68-77°F): 2-4 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): Unacceptable
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): Unacceptable

Serum Specimens (Pour-Overs)
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 2-4 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 7 days
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): 7 days

Plasma Specimens (Aliquots)
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 12 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 7 days
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): 7 days

Specimen Storage in Department Prior to Disposal:

Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 7 days


Dearborn Chemistry Laboratory
Farmington Hills Chemistry Laboratory
Royal Oak Automated Chemistry Laboratory 


Sunday – Saturday, 24 hours a day. 
Results available within 24 hours of receipt in the Laboratory.

Reference Range

Negative: Less than 8.0 mIU/mL
Positive: Greater than equal to 12.0 mIU/mL
Indeterminate: Greater than 8.0 mIU/mL and less than 12.0 mi IU/mL.

Test Methodology

Chemiluminescence Immunoassay.


A positive Hepatitis B Surface Antibody result indicates a past infection or past vaccination. A positive result indicates sufficient antibody concentration for future exposure to the virus.

Clinical Utility

This assay aids in the diagnosis of Hepatitis B Immune Status.

Clinical Disease

  • The incubation period for hepatitis B is approximately 70 days (range, 30 - 180 days). (1)
  • Patients with hepatitis B may present with fatigue, poor appetite, fever, vomiting and occasionally joint pain, hives or rash. Urine may become darker in color, and then jaundice (a yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes) may appear. Patients may also be asymptomatic or experience only a few symptoms.
  • Hepatitis B infections (HBV) are found worldwide. It is the most prevalent type of acute hepatitis worldwide. Persistent infection with the virus is common. In highly endemic areas approximately 10% of the population are chronic carriers of HBV. The number of chronic carriers worldwide exceeds 230 million. (2)


Hepatitis B virus can be found in blood, saliva, semen and other body fluids of infected individuals. The virus is spread by direct contact with infectious body fluids. Transfusion was formerly the major mode of transmission of Hepatitis B. Hepatitis B infection is now most frequently spread by sexual contact, intravenous drug abuse and transmission from mothers to their newborn infants. (2)


  1. Hsu, H., Feinstone, S., Hoofnagle, J. Acute Viral Hepatitis in Mandell, G., Bennett, J., Dolin. R.(eds.), Principles of Infectious Diseases 7th edition New York, N.Y. 2005 Chapter 115,116.
  2. Farrar, W., Wood, M., Innes, J., Tubbs, H. Infectious Diseases, Time Mirror International Publishers Ltd New York, N.Y. 1995.

CPT Codes

LOINC: 16935-9, 7905-3


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