Ordering Recommendation

May use to predict survival in patients treated for metastatic breast, prostate, and colorectal cancers. May use to evaluate response to therapy.




Immunomagnetic Cell Separation/Immunofluorescent Stain/Computer Assisted Analysis




1-5 days

New York DOH Approval Status

This test is New York DOH approved.

Specimen Required

Patient Preparation

If the patient is on doxorubicin therapy, allow at least 1 week following administration of a dose of doxorubicin before blood draw.


2 CellSave Preservative tubes (ARUP supply # 44867) available online through eSupply using ARUP Connect™ or contact ARUP Client Services at (800) 522-2787. (Min: 8 mL per tube)

Specimen Preparation

Transport 20 mL whole blood. (Min: 16 mL)

Storage/Transport Temperature

Room temperature.

Unacceptable Conditions

Specimens not collected in the CellSave tube or collected in expired CellSave tubes. Short draws.


Submit with Order: Source of metastatic cancer. This assay is FDA approved only for breast, colorectal, or prostate metastatic cancers; other types will not be tested.


Ambient: 4 days; Refrigerated: Unacceptable; Frozen: Unacceptable

Reference Interval

By report

Interpretive Data

Refer to report.

For additional information, refer to the Breast Cancer Management Assays, Prostate Cancer, or Colorectal Cancer topic at arupconsult.com.

Compliance Category



The CellSearch™ Circulating Tumor Cell kit is intended for the quantification of circulating tumor cells (CTC) of epithelial origin for metastatic breast, colon, or prostate cancer, in whole blood. This assay can be used to predict progression free and overall survival in patients treated for metastatic cancer.

The results of a CellSearch test should be interpreted with caution if specimens are drawn within 7 days of administration of doxorubicin therapy.

Hotline History


CPT Codes

86152; 86153


Component Test Code* Component Chart Name LOINC
0093400 Circulating Tumor Cell Number 67568-6
0093401 Patient History - Metastatic Cancer Type 63929-4
2007444 EER Circulating Tumor Cell Count 11526-1
* Component test codes cannot be used to order tests. The information provided here is not sufficient for interface builds; for a complete test mix, please click the sidebar link to access the Interface Map.


  • Cell Search
  • Circulating Tumor Cells, Breast, Colon, Prostate
  • CTC
Circulating Tumor Cell Count