Sweat Test

Also known as: chloride sweat test.

What is a sweat test?

The sweat test is a medical test that helps in the diagnosis of cystic fibrosis. The sweat test measures the amount of chloride present in the sweat. People with cystic fibrosis have more chloride in their sweat than those who do not have CF.


What happens during the procedure?

A chemical is applied to an area of the arm or leg, and then electric stimulation is used in order to stimulate the body to produce sweat. Then the sweat is collected on a piece of gauze or filter paper. The paper is then sent to a laboratory for testing and analysis.

Is any special preparation needed? 

The patient should not use creams or lotions for 24 hours prior to the test.

What are the risk factors?

The chemical is harmless, and the electric stimulation may produce a sensation of tingling or warmth. There are no risk factors related to the test.

Reviewed by: Antonio Rodriguez, MD

This page was last updated on: January 20, 2022 04:29 PM