What is the role of lab testing in the diagnosis and management of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)?

Updated: Apr 10, 2020
  • Author: William A Rowe, MD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Although several laboratory studies may aid in the management of IBD and provide supporting information, no laboratory test is specific enough to adequately and definitively establish the diagnosis, including the following:

  • Complete blood count

  • Nutritional evaluation: Vitamin B12 evaluation, iron studies, red blood cell folate, nutritional markers

  • Erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein levels

  • Fecal calprotectin level

  • Serologic studies: Perinuclear antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies (ANCA), anti-Saccharomyces cerevisiae antibodies (ASCA)

  • Stool studies: Stool culture, ova and parasite studies, bacterial pathogens culture, and evaluation for Clostridium difficile infection [3]

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