On June 27th, the name of the current order “Respiratory (non-sputum) Culture without Gram stain” will change to “Throat Culture Comprehensive.” All other specimen collection details and culture workup will remain the same. Given the fact that there are currently several similarly named tests, this change is being made to reduce confusion regarding test selection and to clarify acceptable specimen types.
New Test FY17
The following tests are now available:
Tree Nut Component Allergens
In addition to allergen components for egg, milk, and peanut, the test menu at Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory has expanded to offer component testing for tree nuts. Component testing measures sIgE antibodies to individual proteins unlike whole allergen testing which measures the presence of specific immunoglobulin E (sIgE) antibodies to a combination of allergenic and non-allergenic proteins. This next generation testing identifies the source of sensitization and helps the clinician assess the risk of systemic reaction.
On March 21, 2017, Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory (SHRL) will be switching instrument/vendors that perform the Beta CTX (BCTX assay); we will be switching from the ROCHE COBAS® platform to the ISYS-IDS platform. Both methods compare very well, however reference ranges will change due to the different methods.
Effective March 20, 2017, Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory’s Immunology department will be switching dsDNA vendors from Varelisa ™ to ThermoFisher/Phadia ™.
Both manufacturers (mfr) have similar methods but different reference criteria presumably due to manufacturer specific dsDNA epitopes identified.
Anal cancer incidence, including in situ and invasive carcinoma is on the rise in North America, with a sharp increase over the past several decades. Oncogenic types of human papilloma virus (HPV) have been shown to be the principle cause of both cervical and anal cancer. HPV is the most common sexually transmitted disease in the United States and anal intercourse is a major risk factor for acquiring the infection. Anal cancer affects both men and women; women having the highest overall likelihood of developing carcinomas of the anorectal region. At risk populations for developing anal carcinoma include men who have sex with men, HIV positive individuals (including those without a history of anal intercourse), immunocompromised patients including a history of organ transplant, those with a history of genital warts, and women with abnormal vulvar, vaginal or cervical Pap results.
As of January 30th, 2017 the test for Fecal Leukocytes will be discontinued and replaced with testing for Fecal Lactoferrin.
This new lateral flow immunochromatographic test offers enhanced sensitivity through the detection of Trichomonas antigen as opposed to the traditional wet prep method, which relied on the labor intensive microscopic visualization of motile Trichomonas trophozoites. Because this new assay detects antigen as opposed to viable organism, specimen stability is also extended. When collected with a single eSwab™, specimens are stable for up to 24 hours at ambient temperature and 36 hours when refrigerated. Swabs collected for the wet prep method were only stable for 3-5 hours, so there is no longer a need for STAT delivery to the laboratory.
Effective August 18, 2016, the Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory Microbiology Department will begin offering the Verigene® Enteric Pathogens Test, a new rapid molecular test that simultaneously detects and identifies the following pathogenic enteric bacteria, viruses, and toxins that commonly cause acute community-acquired diarrhea. Testing occurs directly from stool in Cary-Blair preservative with a 1 day turnaround time (2-3 days faster than current methods).