Instructions for Submitting Diagnostic Specimens for Testing by the DVBD Bacterial Diseases Diagnostic Laboratory
CDC Submission Form
Complete a CDC submission form (CDC 50.34) CDC Data and Specimen Handling (DASH) section form 50.34 for submission of laboratory specimens or call DVBD for a copy at 970-221-6400.
The following requirements are based on the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA).
NOTE: Testing will not be initiated without the following inclusions:
On the test request form:
- unique specimen identification number or patient name
- type of specimen (e.g. serum, csf, etc…)
- suspected etiology
- date of onset of symptoms
- brief clinical description
- date of specimen collection
- antibiotic treatment received
- any pertinent travel history
On the test specimen container:
- Unique specimen identification number or patient name
- Source of sample if multiple samples are submitted
NOTE: The submitter will be notified if any information needed is incomplete.
For information regarding shipping packages and applicable regulations, please refer to the NCEZID Division of Scientific Resources' Specimen Management site for specific information.
Specimen Types and Amounts
- Acute and convalescent specimens, if available, should be sent together and labeled as S1 and S2.
- Ideal timing of specimens:
3 to 10 days after onset of symptoms
2-3 weeks after acute sample
NOTE: If acute sample is taken prior to 10 days post-onset of symptoms, antibodies may not have had time to develop and a false negative may result.
- The specimens listed below may be sent on cold or "blue" ice packs:
|Type of Specimen||Minimum Amount Required for Testing|
Slant, agar plates, agar stabs
|Blood (Bacterial isolation)||
5 mL – 9 mL, anticoagulant needed
|Fluids/Aspirates (Bacterial)||1 mL – 5 mL|
|Serum/Plasma/CSF (Serology)||0.5 mL or more|
|Tissue (Bacterial isolation)||1 cm2 of pathologic area|
Test results are normally available 10 to 14 days after specimen receipt. Reporting times for test results may be longer during summer months when bacterial zoonoses activity increases. Receipt of a hard copy of the results will take 2 weeks after testing completion.
Send all specimens via Federal Express to:
ATTN: BDB DRL
3156 Rampart Road
Fort Collins, CO 80521
Additional assistance may be obtained from the DVBD Bacterial Diseases Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory at 970-221-6444.
- Page last reviewed: August 30, 2012
- Page last updated: November 26, 2012
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