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Test ID PARID Parasite Identification, Varies

Reporting Name

Parasite Identification

Useful For

Gross identification of parasites (eg, worms) and arthropods (eg, ticks, bed bugs, lice, mites)


Detecting or eliminating the suspicion of parasitic infection by identifying suspect material passed in stool or found on the body


Supporting the diagnosis of delusional parasitosis


Identifying ticks, including Ixodes species (the vector for Lyme disease)

Reflex Tests

Test ID Reporting Name Available Separately Always Performed
BUG Arthropod Identification No, (Bill Only) No
WORMY Parasite Identification No, (Bill Only) No

Testing Algorithm

When this test is ordered, 1 of the 2 reflex tests above will be performed and charged based on whether the object is an arthropod or worm. For parasite artifacts and nonhuman parasites, the reflex test performed will be based on whether the object most closely resembles a worm (eg, mucus strands, food material, fibers) or an arthropod (eg, ticks, mites, free-living insects).


For more information see Parasitic Investigation of Stool Specimens Algorithm.

Specimen Type


Necessary Information

1. Specimen source and isolate description are required: morphology, tests performed, location of specimen, or other pertinent information.

2. Indicate reason for request.

Specimen Required

Specimen Type: Parasitic worms, insects, or mites

Container/Tube: Sterile container (10% formalin or 70% alcohol may be added if appropriate specimen type)

Specimen Volume: Entire specimen

Collection Instructions:

1. For scabies, submit skin scrapings on glass microscope slide. Cover with a clean slide and use a rubber band to hold the 2 slides together (do not tape). Place the slides in a clean, dry container for transport. If no slides are available at time of collection, the dry skin scraping can be submitted in a sterile container and will be placed on slide at time of examination. Skin scraping must be visible with the naked eye to be of a quantity sufficient for testing.

2. Submit whole worms and worm segments in 70% alcohol or formalin. Worms must be clean of stool to be suitable for examination.

3. Submit arthropods (ticks, lice, nits, bed bugs, etc) in a clean, dry container. Do not wrap in tape, gauze, or tissue that might obscure them during examination.

Specimen Minimum Volume

See Specimen Required.

Specimen Stability Information

Specimen Type Temperature Time Special Container
Varies Ambient (preferred)

Reference Values

A descriptive report is provided.

Day(s) Performed

Monday through Friday

CPT Code Information

87168-Arthropod (if appropriate)

87169-Parasite (if appropriate)

LOINC Code Information

Test ID Test Order Name Order LOINC Value
PARID Parasite Identification 20932-0


Result ID Test Result Name Result LOINC Value
PARID Parasite Identification 20932-0

Clinical Information

Infectious diseases are spread and caused by a variety of macroscopic vectors. A wide array of macroscopic parasites (worms and ectoparasites) and parasite mimics or artifacts may be submitted for examination and identification. It is important to promptly and accurately identify these specimens so that the ordering physician can appropriately treat and counsel the patient.


A descriptive report is provided identifying the worm or arthropod. Worms and hard ticks are identified to the species level, when possible, while other parasitic arthropods are identified to the genus level.


Arthropods that do not cause human disease and parasite mimics resembling worms are reported as nonparasites or free-living insects.


This test identifies a tick's species, age, sex, and level of engorgement. It does not include analysis of ticks for the presence of Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease. Testing ticks for potential pathogens such as B burgdorferi is not recommended since it does not indicate if the organism has been passed to the host during feeding. Instead, morphologic features of the submitted tick including the gender and degree of engorgement are more useful for predicting the risk of B burgdorferi transmission. Only female ticks transmit B burgdorferi, and they must be attached for 36 hours or more for transmission to occur. The latter is reflected by the degree of tick engorgement. Ticks that are not engorged with blood pose little risk for Lyme disease.

Method Description

The submitted organism or material is examined macroscopically and microscopically, as appropriate for the specimen. Organisms are identified to the species level when possible.(Mathison BA, Pritt BS. Laboratory Identification of Arthropod Ectoparasites. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2014;27[1]:48-67)

Report Available

1 to 4 days

Reject Due To

All specimens will be evaluated at Mayo Clinic Laboratories for test suitability.

Method Name

BUG: Arthropod and Artifact Identification

WORMY: Gross and Microscopic Examination

Clinical Reference

Mathison BA, Pritt BS. Laboratory Identification of Arthropod Ectoparasites. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2014;27(1):48-67


If not ordering electronically, complete, print, and send a Gastroenterology and Hepatology Client Test Request (T728) with the specimen.

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.