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Section 2 : Specimen Management Policies and Rationale

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Abstract:

This section discusses simple policy statements and includes the rationale for each policy. It includes various topics on specimen collection, procedures, transport, and processing with certain rules followed in the antimicrobial therapy. Specimens such as sputum, urine, wound, spinal fluid, throat and nasopharyngeal, vaginal and endometrial and miscellaneous are used to process the infectious disease. The optimal time for specimen collection must be based on both the type of infectious disease process and the ability of the laboratory to process samples. Children under 7 years of age cannot reliably collect early-morning specimens. The majority of specimens from this age group are randomly collected, and therefore there are circumstances where collection on three consecutive days may be required to optimize retrieval of organisms, especially from gastric aspirates. In endocarditis, typhoid fever, brucellosis, and other uncontrolled infections, bacteremia is continuous, and thus the timing of collection is less critical. In Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 39/RR-14, 26 October 1990, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published its recommendations for the collection of laboratory specimens associated with outbreaks of gastroenteritis. When possible, specimens should be delivered directly to the microbiology laboratory, bypassing central collection areas or other departments. Careful attention to throat specimen collection for direct antigen tests is just as important as the type of specimen taken for culture.

Citation: Miller J. 1999. Specimen Management Policies and Rationale, p 33-48. In A Guide to Specimen Management in Clinical Microbiology, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818234.ch2
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Figure 4

Vaginal swabs invariably contain large numbers of normal flora, as indicated by the presence of large numbers of epithelial cells seen first at low power (A) and then under oil immersion (B). Interpretation is difficult.

Citation: Miller J. 1999. Specimen Management Policies and Rationale, p 33-48. In A Guide to Specimen Management in Clinical Microbiology, Second Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818234.ch2
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