How are the lab tests for the workup of gastroenteritis determined?

Updated: Feb 10, 2017
  • Author: Arthur Diskin, MD; Chief Editor: Steven C Dronen, MD, FAAEM  more...
  • Print
Answer

The patient's evaluation should be based on the clinical assessment and the need to do the following:

  • Further evaluate the seriousness of the condition (degree of dehydration and electrolyte derangement).

  • Determine a specific etiologic agent.

  • Evaluate the patient for noninfectious etiologies.

  • Patients who require further workup include those who appear seriously ill or dehydrated; those who have high fevers, bloody stools, severe abdominal pain, or persistent diarrhea; and those who are immunocompromised or whose condition is suspected of having an epidemic diarrheal etiology.

  • History, epidemiologic considerations, and the physical examination should be the primary guides in determining whether any further diagnostic evaluation is necessary, followed by microscopic examination of the stool.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!