Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Tests and procedures used to diagnose pseudomembranous colitis include:

  • Stool sample. Tests of one or more stool samples often can determine whether C. difficile is present in your colon.
  • Blood tests. They may reveal an abnormally high white blood cell count (leukocytosis), which may indicate pseudomembranous colitis.
  • Colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy. In both of these tests, your doctor uses a tube with a miniature camera at its tip to examine the interior of your colon for signs of pseudomembranous colitis. If you have pseudomembranous colitis, the exam may show raised, yellow plaques (lesions) in your colon, as well as swelling.
  • Imaging tests. Your doctor may obtain an abdominal X-ray or an abdominal CT scan if you have severe symptoms to look for complications such as toxic megacolon or colon rupture.
Dec. 05, 2012