Demodex folliculorum

Testing Indications

The PHO laboratory will no longer identify Scabies (Sarcoptes scabeii) from a non-human source. These Scabies (Sarcoptes scabeii) s should be referred to the Pest Diagnostic Clinic at the University of Guelph.

The following arthropods will continue to be identified at PHO laboratory:

  • suspected lice fleas, bedbugs, maggots or mites removed from a human or vicinity

Specimen Collection and Handling

Specimen Requirements

Test Requested Required Requisition(s) Specimen Type Minimum Volume Collection Kit

Mite ID1

Scraping of skin at track margins


Sterile screw cap container with 70% ethanol

Submission and Collection Notes


The suspected organism may be included under the ‘Test Description’.


Indicate site of collection and any relevant clinical information for the patient.


Please note on the requisition (under other): If the patient has Eosinophilia, HIV, is immunocompromised, has a critical illness or was admitted to ICU.


Indicate Country/Region and if the patient is a new immigrant or refugee or returned traveler under ‘Travel’ section of the requisition. It is imperative that the foreign country be identified.

Storage and Transport

Place specimen in a container and place in a biohazard bag and seal. 

Ensure that the container is labelled with the patient's full name and one other unique identifier such as date of birth or health card number, and that it matches the information on the requisition.

Special Instructions

Use flat edge of scalpel or tongue depressor (if skin is very flaky).

Requisitions and Kit Ordering

Test Frequency and Turnaround Time (TAT)

The Demodex folliculorum specimen testing turnaround time is up to 1 week.

Test Methods

The Demodex folliculorum specimen is examined by microscopy for mites.


Results are reported to the ordering physician or health care provider as indicated on the requisition.

Additional Information

Please refer to the document titled:LAB-SD-024, Parasitology - Clinical Information Requirements.

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Updated 20 July 2020