Fecal fat, quantitative, 72 hr

Alphabetical Test listing

Fecal fat, quantitative, 72 hr-13504

Fecal fat, quantitative, 72 hr
Fat, quantitative
Fecal lipids
Quantitative fecal fat
Stool fat-quantitative
Total fat-quantitative
  • Stool weight
  • Fat content (in g/24 hours)

In malabsorption syndromes, notably pancreatic insufficiency and Whipple disease, steatorrhea is a prominent feature. Fecal fats can be useful in diagnosis of cystic fibrosis, chronic pancreatitis, neoplasia, or stone obstruction. Also useful in regional enteritis, celiac disease, sprue, and the atrophy of malnutrition.

  • Adult patients should be on a standard diet containing 50 to 150 g of fat per day for at least three days before test is started and during the 72-hour collection.
  • In children, the amount of fat in the diet should be constant for one day before the test and during the test.
  • The patient should not have had mineral oil as a laxative prior to specimen collection.
Stool, 72 hour
Entire collection
5 mL homogenized aliquot of a 72 hr collection
  • Collect stool directly into can; do not fillany can more than 2/3 full
  • Secure lid with pressure and firmly attach the O-ring.

State collection time on the can label.

If submitting and aliquot, follow this procedure:

  1. Weigh specimen and collection container and subtract the weight of an empty container of the same type (one-gallon can weight with lid: 360 g metal or 320 g plastic container). This is the "net weight" to be recorded on the request form.
  2. Open the container and observe if the contents are liquid. IF LIQUID STOOL, secure the lid, mix, and submit an aliquot of the total collection. IF SOLID STOOL, add deionized water (approximately 500 mL) to the specimen container and mix thoroughly to create a homogenous specimen. 

Collections of 24 or 48 hours are not recommended since results are subject to greater variability.

  • Place the can and the absorbent sheet into the leakproof plastic bag and seal.
  • Send the entire can

If submitting and aliquot, follow this procedure:

  • Submit a 5-25 mL aliquot of the total collection in an Screw cap plastic container (sterile), no additives.
  • Record on both the container and the test request form the amount of water added to liquefy the stool or if no water was required.
  • Both the container and the test request form must state collection time (in hours). 

One or more clean Fecal fat collection kit,1 gal (LabCorp)


Collection time (in hours)

Refrigerated (preferred) - 14 days
Freeze/thaw cycles - stable x 3
Ambient - 5 days
Frozen - 14 days
  • Container more than 2/3 full
  • Container leaking
  • Improper container (ie, paper cartons, coffee cans, plastic bags, etc)
  • Foreign matter other than feces inside of container (ie, spoons, tongue depressors, plastic bags, toilet paper, etc)
  • Patient not on special diet
  • Improper labeling of container or request form
  • Specimen on outside of container
  • Specimen contaminated with urine
  • Aliquot without "net weight" and "amount of water added" to homogenize the sample
LabCorp Burlington (001354): R-LC
Tu, Th
4 - 7 days


0 - 18 years: 0.0 − 3.1 g/24 hours
>18 years:    0.0 − 7.1 g/24 hours
Result 16142-2