Cytology, Pulmonary

Abbrev Code:NGNCT   
Order Code:LAB1001Order Name:Cytology Non Gyn
Synonyms:GMS Stain, Cytology; Grocott's Methenamine-Silver Stain; Methenamine-Silver Stain; Silver Stain, Cytology; PCP Stain; Fungal Stain; Fungus; Bronchial Brushings; BAL; Bronchial Wash; Sputum, Cytology
Methodology:Preparation, routine staining and microscopic evaluation of sample. Special stains as ordered by the pathologist and performed at additional charge.
CPT Codes: 88312 x1, 88312-26 x1, 88108 x1, 88108-26 x1, 88104 x1, 88104-26 x1, 88104 x1, 88104-26 x1, 88161-26 x1, 88161 x1
Turnaround Time:Performed daily, Mon-Thur 0800-1500, Fri 0800-1530; results are reported within 1-2 days.
Special Instructions:
  • Include pertinent clinical history.
  • If testing for Pneumocystis, viral and/or fungal, choose NON-GYN CYTOLOGY WITH GMS for test.
  • For stat testing for bronchial washing/lavage on weekends and holidays, contact the surgical resident on call through the page operator at 612-273-3211 (or 1-800-888-8642 ext. 273-3211). Provide patient's history, source of specimen and desired testing on request form. Also include requesting physician's name and pager number.

Collection Instructions

Specimen:Bronchial brushing, bronchial washing, bronchoalveolar lavage, sputum
Container:Plastic leakproof container, sterile
Collection Instructions:Specimen for silver stain should not be fixed in alcohol. Deliver rush bronchoscopy specimens directly to the East Bank Core Lab, Mon-Fri. Bronchoalveolar lavage and bronchial washing specimens received by the East Bank Core Lab by 1500 Mon-Thurs will be processed same day. Bronchoalveolar lavage and bronchial washing specimens received by East Bank Core Lab by 1530 Fri will be processed the same day. If weekend service is required for a bronchial specimen needing silver stain, deliver specimen to East Bank Core Lab and page the on-call surgical resident.
  • Bronchial Wash/Lavage: Collect fluid in clean, plastic leakproof container or tube. DO NOT USE FIXATIVE.
  • Bronchial Brush: Using standard bronchoscopy technique, identify the lesion in question and obtain a brushing sample of the lesion. Upon withdrawing the brush, agitate the brush vigorously in a 5-10 mL vial of sterile saline. DO NOT APPLY THE BRUSH DIRECTLY TO SLIDES. If possible, detach the brush and leave it in the vial. Label the vial with the patient's first and last name, date of birth, and specimen source. If transport of the specimen will be delayed more than four hours, the specimen should be submitted in Ringer's solution.
  • Sputum: Specimen should be a deep cough specimen and not saliva. Saliva is of no diagnostic value. Sputum for Pneumocystis gives extremely low yield and is not recommended; rush processing is not available.

Processing and Shipping

Specimen Processing:Store refrigerated.
Shipping Instructions:Ship at refrigerated temperature.
  • Fresh unfixed fluid: Refrigerated; frozen is unacceptable.
  • Fixed of unfixed slides: Room temperature or refrigerated; frozen is unacceptable.
Test Performed at or Referral Lab UM Cytology  (UMMC East Bank)


Reference Range:Reported as negative to positive for malignant cells or other abnormalities.

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