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Test ID: ROTA Rotavirus Antigen, Feces

Reporting Name

Rotavirus Ag, F

Useful For

Investigation of patients with diarrhea, particularly infants, the elderly, and immunocompromised patients


Investigation of nosocomial diarrhea

Clinical Information

Rotavirus is a major cause of nonbacterial gastroenteritis, especially in infants and very young children (6 months-2 years of age) who have not received the rotavirus vaccine. Infection may be entirely asymptomatic or produce a spectrum of disease ranging from mild gastroenteritis to severe diarrhea and vomiting with dehydration. Infection usually begins acutely and lasts for 4 to 8 days. In temperate climates, rotaviral infections are seasonal; they peak in frequency during the winter months and are uncommon during the summer. Rotaviral gastroenteritis is, therefore, sometimes called "winter vomiting disease."


Infection is more likely to be symptomatic in preterm infants, immunosuppressed patients, and elderly individuals, especially those living in nursing homes or other confined quarters. In other children and adults, rotavirus infections are usually subclinical and may be associated with asymptomatic shedding of rotavirus in the feces.


Rapid and accurate detection of rotavirus antigens in fecal specimens may lead to better patient management, particularly in hospitalized or institutionalized patients.


Peak viral counts are reported to occur on days 3 to 5 after onset of symptoms. The virus is eliminated from the infected individual within a few days following acute infection. Specimens collected 8 days or more after onset of symptoms may not contain enough rotavirus antigen to produce a positive reaction.


A prolonged carrier state has been recognized with rotavirus infection.


The rate of positive test results may vary due to age, weather, seasonal factors, geographic location, and the general health environment for the group under study.


See Laboratory Testing for Infectious Causes of Diarrhea Algorithm in Special Instructions for other diagnostic tests that may be of value in evaluating patients with diarrhea.

Report Available

1 to 2 days

Day(s) Performed

Monday through Saturday

Clinical Reference

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Rotavirus. Accessed 4/23/2018. Available at

Method Name

Enzyme Immunoassay (EIA)

Specimen Type


Specimen Required

Supplies: Stool Collection Kit, Random (T635)


Preferred: Sterile fecal container

Acceptable: Swab

Specimen Volume: 5-10 g

Collection Instructions: Place specimen in a tightly sealed plastic bag.

Specimen Minimum Volume

1 g

Specimen Stability Information

Specimen Type Temperature Time Special Container
Fecal Frozen (preferred) 7 days
  Refrigerated  72 hours

Reference Values


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


LOINC Code Information

Test ID Test Order Name Order LOINC Value
ROTA Rotavirus Ag, F 5880-0


Result ID Test Result Name Result LOINC Value
24082 Rotavirus Ag, F 5880-0

Testing Algorithm

See Laboratory Testing for Infectious Causes of Diarrhea in Special Instructions for other tests that may be useful in the evaluation of a patient with diarrhea.

Mayo Clinic Laboratories | Microbiology and Infectious Disease Catalog Additional Information: