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Sputum Culture

Infectious Disease Laboratories : Microbiology

Test ID/Workstation :
Specimen Type:
Tube Type:
Specimen container
Collection Volume:
5.0 mL (minimum 1.0 mL)
Cause for Rejection:
Specimen received in nonsterile container. Sputum specimen containing food particles. Specimen sent on swab is not appropriate for culture.
Special Instructions:
Sputum culture includes gram stain on non-CF (Cystic Fibrosis patients) to check the quality of the specimen. CF sputum specimens will no longer have a gram stain attached to the order, as this must be ordered separately. A gram stain showing >25 squamous epithelial cells indicates that the specimen is contaminated with saliva and should be repeated if possible. The laboratory will communicate with the nurse or doctor if the specimen is contaminated to ascertain whether the specimen should be cultured. If a gram stain is ordered on a CF patient, it will be processed regardless of gram stain result per CF protocol.
48 hours
Additional Info:
Preliminary report available after 24 hours
CPT Code:
CF (cystic fibrosis) Sputum Culture, Sputum Culture
 Specimen Collection Procedures:
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