Routine Parasitology Exam

Abbrev Code:PARASITSTN   
Order Code:LAB3888Order Name:Routine Parasitology Exam
Synonyms:POPR; PDIR; PSTN; Ova; Parasites
Methodology:Microscopic; includes trichome stain from appropriate specimen types.
CPT Codes: 87209 x1, 87177 x1, 87210 x1
Turnaround Time:Performed Mon-Fri; results are reported within 1-3 days.
Special Instructions:Indicate clinical and travel history on request form. Specify parasite suspected.
  • For stool specimens: It is strongly recommended that multiple specimens be submitted for ova and parasite analysis. At least 2-3 specimens should be collected, 1 each day.
  • For blood specimens: Order Blood Parasite Exam LAB3697
  • To submit worms or worm segments, place in 70% alcohol or 10% formalin and order separate test Macroscopic Parasite Identification (MACROPARASIT) LAB3602.

Collection Instructions

Collection Instructions:
Specimen Type Instructions Volume Container
Stool Place specimen into preservative within 1 hour of passage.

Follow instructions on the container as follows:

Mix the contents of the tube with the spoon, twist the cap tightly closed, and shake vigorously until the contents are well mixed.

Do not fill above the line indicated on the container.
Optimal: 5-10 mL EcoFix Preservative
Body Fluid Collect/Aspirate and place into Sterile Leakproof container Optimal: 5-10 mL

Minimum: 0.5 mL
Sterile Container
Bronchial Lavage
Duodenal Fluid
Causes for Rejection:Preservative other than Ecofix submitted. Stool specimens from inpatients after third hospital day, without prior consultation.

Processing and Shipping

Specimen Processing:Store preserved stool at room temperature.
Shipping Instructions:Ship at room temperature.
Test Performed at or Referral Lab Infectious Diseases Diagnostic Laboratory   (UMMC East Bank)


Reference Range:Negative
Limitations:If stool specimen is suspected of containing tapeworm segments or other adult worms, the suspected worm should be placed in 70% alcohol or 10% formalin, and submitted ordered as Macroscopic Parasite Identification (MACROPARASIT) LAB3602. For optimal results, a specific request should be made for the detection of Cryptosporidium, microsporidium, Cyclospora or pinworm. If Cryptosporidiosis is suspected, a Cryptosporidiosis stain (CRYPSTN) LAB3412 should be ordered. This test is not appropriate for the detection of Acanthamoeba, filaria, malaria, trypanosomes, Toxoplasma or Trichomonas. Examination of a minimum of three specimens is required for the detection of greater than or equal to 90% of some protozoal infections, especially Giardiasis.
Use:Detection and identification of parasites: included are Giardia, Entamoeba histolytica (amoeba), Helminth eggs, protozoa, larval worms and segments (proglottids) of tapeworms. Diarrhea, malnutrition, anemia and intestinal obstruction are some of the consequences of infection with intestinal parasites. Protozoa may cause diarrhea and/or malabsorption by elaborating toxins or by adhering to or invading the mucosa or by unknown mechanisms. Cryptosporidiosis occurs as a self-limited moderate diarrhea in young children, especially daycare attendees and their relatives. Helminths (worms) may obstruct the intestine, cause blood loss, or interfere with the absorption of essential nutrients. Larvae or eggs may disseminate beyond the intestine and cause tissue destruction and provoke inflammation. Parasitic protozoa and Helminths of various types also may inhabit the intestinal tract of humans and animals without causing disease.

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