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Published on August 22nd, 2018

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STAT Gram Stain Orders

Culture orders with a STAT priority will be processed as routine. If a STAT gram stain is indicated, follow the instructions below.

STAT Gram stains with a turnaround time of one hour will be performed and reported by the campus laboratory for CSF or any normally sterile specimen site, e.g. wound, joint fluid, body fluid aspirate, or tissue biopsy. A separate Gram Stain (LAB 250) order with a STAT priority is necessary in addition to the appropriate culture order.

Gram stain requests will not be processed STAT for non-sterile site specimens (e.g. expectorated sputum, trans- bronchial biopsy, endobronchial washings, stool specimens & swabs of genitalia or placenta). This is because the expertise required to separately describe pathogenic bacteria from normal flora is not available in the laboratory of the hospital where the specimen is collected. This expertise is only available at the Specialty Laboratory, in the St. Luke’s North Complex (77 Commerce Way).

Routine Gram stain will be performed at Specialty Laboratory with a turnaround time of 8 to 12 hours from receipt of the specimen in the laboratory for the following specimens: (No separate Gram stain order is necessary)

  • bronchial wash, bronchial lavage
  • induced Leukens cultures
  • anaerobic cultures
  • body fluid cultures including joint fluid & CSF
  • ear cultures
  • eye cultures
  • expectorated sputum
  • wound swab, abscess swab or tissue biopsy
  • placenta cultures.

Routine Gram stain will not be performed as part of Urine cultures, Gonococcal cultures, and Comprehensive genital cultures. If a Gram stain is indicated, order Gram Stain (Lab 250) with a Routine priority in addition to the culture order. The turnaround time is 8 to 12 hours from receipt of specimen at Specialty Laboratory.

Please refer any questions or suggestions to Yash Chudasama, Microbiology Supervisor 484-526-4594, Jane Cope, Microbiology Coordinator on 484-526-3889.

Steven Tellschow, MD
Interim Chairman, Department of Pathology

View full memo.


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