Direct to an emergency department for:
- Severe diarrhoea with dehydration or when the person is systemically unwell.
Criteria for referral to public hospital specialist clinic services
- Diarrhoea > 4 weeks duration, affecting activities of daily living, with one or more of the following:
- bloody diarrhoea
- nocturnal diarrhoea
- weight loss (≥ 5% of body weight in previous 6 months)
- abdominal or rectal mass
- inflammatory markers in the blood or stool
- iron deficiency that persists despite correction of potential causative factors.
Information to be included in the referral
Information that must be provided
- Frequency and duration of diarrhoea
- Onset, characteristics and duration of sentinel findings (e.g. erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), C-reactive protein (CRP), faecal microscopy and culture and Clostridium difficile toxin)
- Previous colonoscopy results
- Coeliac serology
- Full blood examination
- Liver function tests.
Provide if available
- Previous histology results
- Details of any previous gastroenterology assessments or opinions
- Iron studies
- Thyroid stimulating hormone levels
- Faecal calprotectin
- Faecal occult blood test
- Recent travel history.
The Summary and referral information lists the information that should be included in a referral request.
See also: statewide referral criteria for inflammatory bowel disease.
Where appropriate and available the referral may be directed to an alternative specialist clinic or service.
Referral to a public hospital is not appropriate for
- Diarrhoea < 4 weeks duration without sentinel findings.