Rational protocols for testing faeces in the investigation of sporadic hospital-acquired diarrhoea

J Hosp Infect. 2001 Feb;47(2):79-83. doi: 10.1053/jhin.2000.0845.


Many recent studies have demonstrated that routine examination of faeces for conventional enteric pathogens such as salmonella, shigella, campylobacter and parasites in patients who develop sporadic hospital-acquired diarrhoea is unnecessary and wasteful. In this paper the advantages and disadvantages of a restricted testing protocol in patients with hospital-acquired diarrhoea are reviewed. Practical issues for safe implementation of such a protocol are also discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Protocols* / standards
  • Cost Savings
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Cross Infection* / diagnosis
  • Cross Infection* / microbiology
  • Cross Infection* / parasitology
  • Diarrhea* / diagnosis
  • Diarrhea* / microbiology
  • Diarrhea* / parasitology
  • Feces / microbiology*
  • Feces / parasitology*
  • Humans
  • Infection Control / economics
  • Infection Control / methods*
  • Infection Control / standards
  • Patient Selection*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Time Factors