Cytology, Tzanck Smear
8209714
Ordering Recommendation
 
Mnemonic
SZ
Methodology
Microscopy
Performed
Mon-Fri
Reported
1-5 days  
New York DOH Approval Status
This test is New York DOH approved.
Submit With Order
Specimen Required
Patient Preparation
Indications: Detection and characterization of inflammatory/infectious processes of the skin, especially herpetic infections.  
Collect
Direct smear of material collected from a skin lesion, usually a vesicle.

Supplies:
Two (or more) clean glass slides fixative (95% ethyl alcohol), skin scraping spatula, and Cytology test request form.

Collection Procedure:
Label the slides with the patient's first and last name, date of birth, and specimen source in pencil on the frosted end and place in a container filled with 95% ethyl alcohol so the slides are completely covered. Gently scrape the area of abnormality. If the abnormality is a vesicle, remove the covering and scrape both at the base of the vesicle and around the rim. Remove one of the slides from the fixative. Quickly and evenly smear the collected material on one of the glass slides. Immediately re-immerse the slide in fixative. Repeat the process with the second slide, if necessary, for better diagnostic yield. Repeat the process for additional areas if necessary. After collection, leave the slides in the 95% alcohol for 10 minutes and then air dry. Submit the specimen and the completed test request form to the Cytopathology Laboratory.  
Specimen Preparation
  
Storage/Transport Temperature
  
Unacceptable Conditions
Air dried smears. Refer to the Specimen Rejection section Specimen Transport Guide.  
Remarks
  
Stability
Fixed slides: Indefinitely  
Reference Interval
By report  
Interpretive Data
 
Note
 
CPT Code(s)
88160
Components
Aliases
  • Herpes, Cytology
  • Tzanck Smear