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Test ID: SSF1 Nocardia Stain, Varies

Reporting Name

Nocardia Stain

Useful For

Detection of Nocardia species and other partially-acid fast aerobic actinomycetes in clinical specimens

Clinical Information

Nocardia species and other aerobic actinomycetes can cause significant disease in immunocompromised patients. Clinical presentations can include, but are not limited to, pneumonia, skin abscess, bacteremia, brain abscess, eye infection, and joint infection.


The modified acid-fast stain can detect Nocardia species and other partially-acid fast aerobic actinomycetes directly from clinical specimens.


Patients whose specimens are reported as partially acid-fast positive should be considered potentially infected with Nocardia species or other aerobic actinomycetes, pending definitive diagnosis by molecular methods or culture.

Reflex Tests

Test ID Reporting Name Available Separately Always Performed
TISSR Tissue Processing No, (Bill Only) No

Testing Algorithm

When this test is ordered, the reflex test may be performed at an additional charge.

Report Available

1 to 2 days

Day(s) Performed

Monday through Sunday

Clinical Reference

Brown-Elliott BA, Brown JM, Conville PS, Wallace RJ: Clinical and laboratory features of the Nocardia spp. based on current molecular taxonomy. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2006 Apr;19(2):259-282

Method Name

Modified Acid-Fast Stain

Specimen Type


Necessary Information

Specimen source is required.

Specimen Required

Container/Tube: Sterile container

Specimen Volume: Entire collection

Collection Instructions: Collect a raw specimen.

Specimen Minimum Volume

See Specimen Required

Specimen Stability Information

Specimen Type Temperature Time Special Container
Varies Refrigerated (preferred) 7 days
  Ambient  7 days

Reference Values

Reported as positive or negative

Test Classification

This test has been cleared, approved, or is exempt by the US Food and Drug Administration and is used per manufacturer's instructions. Performance characteristics were verified by Mayo Clinic in a manner consistent with CLIA requirements.

CPT Code Information


87176-Tissue processing (if appropriate)

LOINC Code Information

Test ID Test Order Name Order LOINC Value
SSF1 Nocardia Stain 21003-9


Result ID Test Result Name Result LOINC Value
SSF1 Nocardia Stain 21003-9


If not ordering electronically, complete, print, and send a Microbiology Test Request (T244) with the specimen.

Mayo Clinic Laboratories | Neurology Catalog Additional Information:

mml-CNS-Infections, mml-Pediatric