Cytology, Gastrointestinal Tract

Abbrev Code:NGNCT   
Order Code:LAB1001Order Name:Cytology Non Gyn
Synonyms:Gastrointestinal Tract Cytology
Methodology:Cytopreparation, routine staining and microscopic examination. Special stains if indicated.
CPT Codes: 88160-26 x1, 88108 x1, 88160 x1, 88108-26 x1
Test Includes:Preparation, routine staining, and microscopic examination; special stains as ordered by the pathologist will be performed at additional charge.
Turnaround Time:Performed Mon-Fri, 0800-1500; results are reported within 1-3 days.
Special Instructions:Provide pertinent clinical history. Add in comment field for fungal stain requests.

Collection Instructions

Specimen:Brushings (gastric, esophageal, GI junction, duodenal, bile duct and others)
Container:Plastic leakproof container, sterile
Collection Instructions:  Gastrointestinal tract brushings (esophageal, GI junction, gastric, duodenal, bile duct, other)
  • Collection: Upon withdrawing the brush, agitate the brush vigorously in a 5-10 mL vial of saline. DO NOT APPLY THE BRUSH DIRECTLY TO THE 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. 

Gastric Washings
  • Collection: Using standard endoscopy technique, lavage the area of interest using a physiologic solution such as Ringers solution Aspirate the solution and place in a sterile specimen container. Label the container with the patient's first and last name, date of birth and specimen source. 

Processing and Shipping

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


Reference Range:Reported as negative to positive for malignant cells or other abnormalities.
Use:Establish the presence of primary or metastatic neoplasms of the gastrointestinal tract or reactive, inflammatory processes; aid in the diagnosis of herpes infection and candidiasis of the esophagus, ectopic gastric epithelium (Barrett's esophagus).

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