Document Detail

Faecal elastase-1: lyophilization of stool samples prevents false low results in diarrhoea.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11444478     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: In patients with diarrhoea, faecal elastase-1 is used to detect exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. Diarrhoea is defined as >85% stool water content. METHODS: We analysed elastase-1 in 519 stool samples from 310 patients unprocessed as well as after lyophilization in a standard laboratory lyophilizator. Stool water content was calculated by weight difference before and after lyophilization. RESULTS: 151 stool samples were classified as 'diarrhoea' (mean stool water content 88.8%); all others had a mean water content of 75.4%. In the 'diarrhoea' samples, elastase-1 levels were considerably higher after lyophilization--with a calculated normal water content of 75% (606 +/- 359 microg/g, mean +/- s)--compared to measurement when unprocessed (279 +/- 151 microg/g; P < 0.0001). In 16 of the 151 cases (11%), the abnormally low elastase-1 level below 200 microg/g found in unprocessed stools proved normal (>200 microg/g) after lyophilization and correction for stool water content. CONCLUSION: Diarrhoea can result in falsely decreased elastase-1 levels in a number of patients with non-pancreatogenic diarrhoea. Lyophilization is a simple measure by which to determine elastase-1 independently of stool water content. Lyophilization of stool samples can therefore help to prevent wrong positive elastase-1 test results.
B Fischer; S Hoh; M Wehler; E G Hahn; H T Schneider
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Validation Studies    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Scandinavian journal of gastroenterology     Volume:  36     ISSN:  0036-5521     ISO Abbreviation:  Scand. J. Gastroenterol.     Publication Date:  2001 Jul 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-07-10     Completed Date:  2001-12-04     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0060105     Medline TA:  Scand J Gastroenterol     Country:  Norway    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  771-4     Citation Subset:  IM    
Dept. of Medicine 1, University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen, Germany.
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MeSH Terms
Aged, 80 and over
Case-Control Studies
Child, Preschool
Diarrhea / etiology*
Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency / complications*,  diagnosis*,  enzymology
False Positive Reactions
Feces / chemistry*,  enzymology*
Freeze Drying / methods*,  standards*
Middle Aged
Pancreatic Elastase / analysis*
Pancreatic Function Tests / methods*,  standards*
Sensitivity and Specificity
Water / analysis
Reg. No./Substance:
7732-18-5/Water; EC Elastase

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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