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I need a "best guess" diagnosis

JEDilworth bactitech at nospamhortonsbay.com
Tue Jun 10 09:26:54 EST 2003

What has your doctor tested your stool for? If you've only had bacterial
cultures done and not O&P (ova and parasite) examinations, then you must
get your stool tested for this. Also, did the bacterial culture include
testing for Campylobacter sp.? Incredibly, there are still some
laboratories who only test stool cultures for Salmonella and Shigella
sp. They should minimally include Salmonella, Shigella, Campylobacter,
Yersinia, and E. coli O157:H7 in their bacterial culture schema. The
preferable method for O&P collection is x 3 (one specimen/day for three
days or every other day until three specimens have been obtained. Do NOT
collect all three specimens on one day. Some parasites shed large
amounts over time, i.e. one day the specimen will be negative, and the
next day positive). You need to collect for these with preservative
specimen cups, available from the laboratory that will test your stool.

I went to a workshop once quite a few years ago. The presenter said that
any patient with diarrhea that persists for over one month must be
tested for parasites.

You also must insist on a visit to a gastroenterologist, especially if
all the above testing has been done. If this is a family practice or
internist, he has given up way too easily. There could be something else
going on with your intestines other than something infectious or
parasitic. Usually these docs rule all that out first by culture, O&P,
occult blood testing, and possibly other tests tailored to the patients
presentation. Then they will scope you out. I know this is so because
our microbiology lab gets these type of specimens all the time from

Go to someone who knows their way around the GI tract. There is no
reason you need put up with that kind of reply. I notice you're from
Canada. How hard is it, with your health care system, to get a referral
to a specialist or even a second opinion? Are you stuck with just one

Judy Dilworth, M.T. (ASCP)
Microbiology (29 years)

"rob klein" <rklein at odyssey.on.ca> wrote in message
news:ve6p8oqdp4ee81 at corp.supernews.com...
> Recently I took a cruise to Aruba,Margarita,Grenada, & Tobago. Since I
> returned home my stools have been very loose (not diarrhea loose, but
> and light beige in color. This has persisted daily for 3 months now. I
> feel sick,no fever, regular amount of energy. Stool samples all
> Doctor says he has no idea. Learn to live with it. I don't want to
> stained underwear and sore bum rest of my life. I think maybe I have a
> strain of a normal bacteria that gives off a mild toxin, or maybe
picked up
> amoebas. Any thoughts appreciated.

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