Overcoming aversion to stool sampling with hygienic tools
Faecal samples can contain a variety of biomarkers that help in the diagnosis of a wide range of diseases. These include calprotectin to differentiate between Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, faecal occult blood tests that detect bowel cancer, elastase for pancreatic insufficiency and tests for the presence of bacteria or parasites.
Patients usually collect the sample themselves during toileting, following instructions to prevent the sample from becoming contaminated from other material in the toilet bowl. Depending on the test, they may be instructed to collect the sample directly into a sampling device, in a container, scoop a small portion into a vial, or smear a small amount on special test paper.