Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Fecal analysis: overview

Synonym(s): faecal, faeces

Contributor(s): James Simpson

Overview

Sampling

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Tests

Methodologies

  • Varies with individual test.
  • McMaster technique for nematode, cestode eggs.
  • Zinc sulfate flotation for Giardial crytosporidia cysts Giardia spp Giardia duodenalis.

McMaster technique

  • Mix 3 g feces with 42 ml water.
  • Pour mixture through 100 mesh sieve to remove gross debris.
  • Place filtrate in 2 centrifuge tubes.
  • Centrifuge for 3 mins at 1500 rpm.
  • Discard supernatant.
  • Resuspend deposit in equal volume saturated salt solution.
  • Mix thoroughly.
  • Using Pasteur pipette, take an aliquot. Place under McMaster slide, stand for 5 mins.
  • View under low power microscope.
  • Count number of eggs/cysts in chamber.
  • Multiply by 50 to give egg per gram feces.

Zinc sulfate flotation test

  • Mix 3 g feces with 42 ml water.
  • Pur mixture through 100 mesh sieve to remove gross debris.
  • Place filtrate in 2 centrifuge tubes.
  • Centrifuge for 3 mins at 1500 rpm.
  • Discard supernatant.
  • Resuspend desposit in Zinc sulfate solution.
  • Centrifuge again at 1500 rpm for 3 mins.
  • Collect surface supernatant and place on microscope slide.
  • Apply 1 drop Lugol's iodine and a coverslip.
  • View under microscope.
  • Cysts per gram is measured as number of cysts counted multiplied by 20 and divided by volume of ZnSO4 solution used.

Availability

  • Varies with individual tests.
  • Should be available form most commercial laboratories or via practice laboratory.

Technician (extrinsic) limitations

  • Experience required varies with test.
  • Generally should be achieved by veterinary nurse/surgeon using practice laboratory.

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

Other sources of information

  • Simpson J W (1998) Gastrointestinal system and exocrine pancreas. In: BSAVA Manual of Small Animal Clinical Pathology. Davidson M G & Else R W (eds), BSAVA, Cheltenham.


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