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Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Test Catalogue

​Sputum

Cytology


​ ​Specimen Requirements

Type​
  • ​Early-morning, deep-cough sputum; post-bronchoscopy sputum
​Container
​Collection Procedure
  • ​Label container with patient’s first and last name, personal health number (PHN), date and time of collection. Write “SPUTUM” on container
  • Specimen should be obtained within 10-15 minutes of patient waking in the morning, before breakfast. Teeth and mouth should be cleaned before collection.
  • Instruct patients to expectorate a deep-cough specimen directly into the container
  • Best results are obtained from a series of specimens collected on three consecutive days
  • Post-bronchoscopy sputum: collect one deep-cough specimen within 24 hours of bronchoscopy
  • Securely tighten container and place in biohazard bag. Place completed requisition, with label facing out, in outside pouch.
  • Deliver to Cytology laboratory and place in refrigerator
​Required Volume
  • Minimum Volume: 1 mL
    (Submitting the minimum volume makes it impossible to repeat the test or perform confirmatory/reflex testing. In some situations, a minimum volume may require a second collection)
​Stability/Storage
  • ​Refrigerate
  • If a delay in delivery is anticipated (greater than one day), add Cytolyt (minimum one part Cytolyt to three parts specimen) or 50 per cent alcohol (one part alcohol to one part specimen)
    • Note addition of Cytolyt or alcohol on requisition
  • DO NOT USE FORMALIN
Grounds for Rejection​

Testing Information​ ​

Availability​
  • ​Monday to Friday (excluding statutory holidays), 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Testing Site​
  • ​SCH
​Methodology
  • ​Microscopic evaluation of liquid-based cytologic preparation
​Specimen Retention
  • ​Until case is signed out by pathologist
  • Slides are retained for 20 years
​Additional Comments
  • ​If microbiological testing is required and only one specimen is available, it should be sent with no fixative added to the Microbiology laboratory first, accompanied by both a microbiology requisition and a cytology requisition.

Testing Ordering Requirements​ ​

Forms Required


​If you choose to print this information, it is valid only on date of print.

Laboratory Controlled Document LSM-152 v2

Last Modified: Monday, July 18, 2016 |
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