Call for Feedback on LOINC Groups

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    Daniel Vreeman

    Welcome to the discussion forum for LOINC Groups. We’d like to hear your feedback on the file format and the LOINC Groups that have been created. Additionally, we’d love to know how you intend to use this artifact and any suggestions for new LOINC Groups.

    Vojtech Huser

    The new grouping of loinc codes is a great new feature.
    Given it is in alpha:
    What is the roadmap for it? Beta by October 2017?
    Full production in Jan 2018?

    Katie Allen

    Since this is a new space for LOINC, the LOINC team is very interested in community feedback, so we will be organizing methods to do so over the course of the next several months. The current plan is to release another version (hopefully Beta, but perhaps Alpha 2 depending on the feedback) with the December 2017 LOINC release.

    Daniel Vreeman

    New “human friendly” view of LOINC Group File posted

    Our colleagues at NLM thought it’d be nice to explore the content of the LOINC Group file in an Excel spreadsheet with the subtotal function showing the counts of each group.

    We’ve posted this spreadsheet view here:

    LOINC 2.61 GroupFile Alpha 1 grouped with counts
    requires a free login

    With this format you can easily expand and collapse the groups in a tree-like structure.

    This spreadsheet has the columns for parent group and other fields hidden.
    Also, don’t try to import this spreadsheet into a database – you’ll get the subtotal rows too. Better to use the main release format: LOINC Group File, Alpha 1


    Do you have groups for an analyte regardless of unit of measure?


    Very nice job, once LOINC GROUP is completed, it could be used in Thai’s medical reimbursement system in order to drive all hospitals to use LOINC in HIS.

    Marla Albitz

    Good to see this work. Here at Wolters Kluwer Health we are evaluating its value in helping enhance our CDS capability. I hope to have the chance to engage with others as we determine if this grouping can help us solve our issues with the flat, non-hierarchical nature of LOINC.

    Daniel Vreeman

    Hi Charles –

    As you probably know, LOINC codes are not specific to a particular unit of measure. The Property does constrain which units are allowable for a given LOINC term. For example, and mass/volume unit could be used with a LOINC term that has a Property of MCnc. The units fields in the LOINC table are all meant as “examples”; they are not normative

    We are making a few high level groups for LOINC codes that collect terms across Properties. One area of focus initially are groups that collect MCnc and SCnc terms for the same analyte. With the molecular weight, such a group would allow equivalence.

    Take a look at the ParentGroup: LG55-6 MassMolConc

    It forms Groups that pull together measures of the same analyte with either MCnc or SCnc:

    LG10153-1 Bilirubin|Pt|Urine|Test strip|MassMolEquiv|584.662 g/mole
    20505-4 [Mass/volume] in Urine by Test strip
    41016-7 [Moles/volume] in Urine by Test strip

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 9 months ago by Daniel Vreeman.
    • This reply was modified 5 years, 9 months ago by Tim Briscoe. Reason: Removed offending HTML tags
    Daniel Vreeman

    I’ve got a question for our public health colleagues using LOINC. Would it be useful to have groups that pull together tests on isolates from “normally sterile sites”?

    If so, is there an agreed list of such specimen sites? (I see, for example, one from MN:

    Lin Zhang

    Amazing job! Maybe it could facilitate the development of common code subsets like Top2K+ in other countries/regions etc.

    Lin Zhang

    Multiple levels of granularity may be needed for various use cases.

    Katie Allen

    We’d love to receive your feedback! In this file, you will find new groups. Particularly, we would be interested in your feedback on the following groups: a large group that rolls up six classes, a group for microbiology antibody types/method/property, reportable conditions, radiology, and document ontology.

    What you won’t see in the attached file are the LG codes, but do not fear! We have been working on ways to persist the codes in our database and the December release will likely contain permanent LG codes. Since they are not ready for prime time, we removed them from this file. You also will not sure description information, which will be in final artifacts.

    Community guidance is critical for the ultimate success of the new LOINC Groups so any thoughts you have are appreciated.Click here to download the LOINC Groups file.

    Lin Zhang

    LOINC Groups might be used to create LOINC value sets.

    Typical use cases and examples would facilitate understanding of LOINC Groups and their use/value.

    Visualization of the hierarchical structure of LOINC Groups would also be helpful to quickly/briefly master LOINC Groups.

    Further categorization/classification of LOINC Groups would facilitate navigation of LOINC Groups.

    Dr Sudha Kodati

    Normally sterile sites – as per their classification is a subset of LOINC attribute “System/ specimen”. So are you proposing to come up with group of LOINC attributes – System/ Specimen?

    It is not a bad idea, but then, if we go that route to classify groups, then it is endless list.

    I though, using FILTER function in Excel – to get LOINC codes by Specimen is far more easy.


    What do others say?


    Btw – the idea of LOINC groups is great. Thumbs up. It will make coding a lot easier.

    Rebecca Ettien


    Thank you for all you (the greater LOINC you) do.

    Here’s the good news.  When I discovered the LOINC_2.61_GroupFile_Alpha_1_grouped_with_counts download file with the Loinc Groups for nursing specific documentation, e.g. diastolic blood pressure, and body weight, I felt like I’d won the LOINC lottery.  For the first time I could see all the codes used in one place.  Although I had to filter out the lab Loinc Groups to only see the nursing specific content, it was worth the time.

    Now the bad news.  With the release of Loinc 2.64, 6/15/2018, not only do I not find a document labeled LOINC 2.64 GroupFile grouped with counts, as I would expect to find, so that I can see what I found with LOINC_2.61_GroupFile_Alpha_1_grouped_with_counts, but by the time I find the Loinc Groups located in a file named GroupLoincTerms, I discovered that the Loinc Group ID number had changed.  How did I find this out you are wondering?  When I searched on the GroupId column for LG10304-0, Body height|Len|Pt|^Patient (from the LOINC_2.61_GroupFile_Alpha_1_grouped_with_counts download file, there was no match.  However, when I searched on Body height, there they were, with a different GroupId.

    I am wondering why the Loinc Group Id changed from one version to the next?  I am seeking guidance on how a nurse, in the absence of consistent Loinc Group Ids, can efficiently utilize Loinc to view and consume clinical observation codes without an obvious LOINC provided way?  Loinc Panels are interesting to look at but do not provide a user friendly or consumable organization structure for observation codes used for clinical concepts.

    Thank you in advance for your time and attention to my inquiry.


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