Laboratory Test Information Guide

Details for Clostridioides (Clostridium) difficile toxin

Test Name: Clostridioides (Clostridium) difficile toxin
Alternate Name(s): C. difficile
Laboratory: Microbiology (VH)
Specimen Type: Faeces
Collection Information: C. difficile testing is indicated for patients with unexplained new-onset diarrhea (≥3 unformed stools within the last 24 hours).

Toxin testing in not performed on children less than 1 year of age.

Have patient pass liquid or unformed stool directly into a clean, dry container.
Send at least 5-10 mL.

Formed stools are unacceptable and will not be processed for Clostridium difficile toxin.
STAT requests for C. difficile toxin must be cleared by the Microbiologist On-Call.
Test Schedule: Batched and performed daily. Monday-Friday at 1100 and 1400 hrs. Weekends and STAT holidays at 1300 hr.
Turnaround time from when specimen
is received in testing laboratory:
1 day
Reference Range:  
Effective Date: 2008-02-08
Revised Date: 2019-03-08
Critical Value:  
Interpretive Comments: Samples are processed by an EIA screening technique. If results are inconclusive, they will be tested by PCR the following day.
Special Processing:  
Comments: Children may carry C. difficile asymptomatically. Presence of this organism or its toxin may not be diagnostic of infection.

Only one sample will be processed per patient within a 7 day period.

Specimens previously positive will not be repeated for at least 14 days.
Method of Analysis: Enzyme Immunoassay
Critical Information Required:  
Storage & Shipment: The specimen must be refrigerated and received in Microbiology within 24 hours of collection.
System Codes: 
Referred To:  

Questions? Comments? Contact Laura Gopaul