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Stool Collection: Culture

How Do You Collect Stool?

Lab testing is done on stool to detect infections. The stool culture test looks for disease causing bacteria. This helps the doctor to treat your child's illness.

Stool collection can be messy. Ensure that you and your child wash your hands afterwards.

Preparing for a Stool Culture

For the Potty-Trained Child

You may ask the clinic or the doctor’s office for supplies to collect stool. This would include a “hat” to place on the toilet rim and a container.

Ask your child to urinate in the toilet first, then, lift the toilet seat and place the hat shaped container over the rim of the toilet. Lower the toilet seat. Have your child sit and try to defecate into the hat container. The toilet paper should be tossed in the toilet bowl, not the container.

For the Child in Diapers

  • Collecting stool from a child in diapers can be difficult. Liquid stool can seep into the diaper before it can be collected. Here are a couple of tips to help you obtain the stool. Line diaper with plastic wrap
  • Check diaper often to see if child has stooled.

Collect and Submit

Orange Para-Pak

  1. Orange Pera-PakUse the tool attached to the lid to get stool sample from the plastic-lined diaper or collection hat.
  2. Put the stool sample in the container until the liquid level gets to the red line on the container.
  3. Put the lid on tightly to make sure no liquid spills out.
  4. Label the container with the patient's name, date of birth, date and time of collection.
  5. Keep the sample at room temperature; do not refrigerate. Take back to the lab within 72 hours.

Last Updated 07/2022

Reviewed By J. Willoughby, RN
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