Quick Test for Occult Bleeding
Often, I want a rapid test for occult blood in the office, such as when I need to distinguish invasive from noninvasive gastroenteritis; detect bleeding associated with esophagitis, gastritis, ulcer disease, or colitis; or evaluate a patient’s complaint of black stools. Many insurance companies will not reimburse me for this, and it would create an unsafe delay to wait for laboratory results.
A quick, efficient, and inexpensive alternative is to open the cardboard occult blood card and remove the paper. Cutting the paper in several small squares gives multiple tests. The supplied control solution is sufficient for multiple tests, and the control portion of the paper can be used later to ensure the tests are still valid. Remember, testing in the office does not replace home fecal occult blood testing for colon cancer.