Fecal Fat Quantitative

Steatorrhea may be caused by a number of pancreatic and intestinal disorders. Excretion of greater than 7 grams of fat per 24 hours, when on a diet of 100 to 150 grams of fat, is suggestive of a malabsorption defect.

Patient preparation is very important. For 3 days prior to and during the collection period, the patient should:

  • Be on a fat controlled diet.
  • Not consume any laxatives
  • Avoid synthetic fat substitutes or fat blocking nutritional supplements.

Barium interferes with the test procedure and a waiting period of 48 hours is recommended before stool collection.

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