Culture & Sensitivity - Sputum

Sputum is Phlegm that is produced by the infected respiratory tract when coughing. Culture and Sensitivity test on the Phlegm sample helps to find the microbial infection eg. bacterial Pneumonia and/or another causative pathogen behind the respiratory infection.
Test Code: 1118
₹ 500.00

Culture & Sensitivity – Sputum:

Why Culture and Sensitivity – Sputum Test?


Sputum is thick mucus produced in the lungs. It may also be referred to as phlegm due to its thickness which may present with pathogenic microbes in the respiratory tract (lung-related disorder) caused by infectious acid-fast bacilli - Mycobacterium tuberculi, legionella, fungi etc. Infection or chronic illness affecting the respiratory airways of the lungs in the chronic stage may present with productive cough (i.e patient may end up with cough-up sputum). The colour of the sputum may vary according to the type of infection and the stage of illness. The sputum may appear colourless, white or grey, dark yellow or green, brown, pink-red etc. Culture and Sensitivity test helps to detect underlying pathologies like the presence of infections (bacteria, virus or fungi etc) or its associated diseases/prevailing conditions (presenting complaints), inflammation. The main objective of performing this test is to check for the presence of the pathogenic organism and its growth in the given suspected sample specimen leading to conditions such as viremia, bacteraemia etc. Hence this test helps to detect the presence of any systemic infection eg. septicemia that can lead to sepsis (a life-threatening complication). Thus sputum culture and sensitivity test detect the presence of pathogenic bacteria in those who have bacterial pneumonia or a lower respiratory tract infection. Moreover, Anti-microbial sensitivity tests (also known as susceptibility testing) are also performed in addition, to appropriate antibiotic treatment & for better prognosis. Hence sputum culture test uses this mucus sample specimen to check for any growth of infectious microbes eg. Tuberculosis (Acid-fast bacilli i.e Mycobecterium tuberculi) or serious infection of the airways or the lungs such as pneumonia, bronchitis, cystic fibrosis etc. Some of the symptoms include cough which produces a lot of sputum, breathing difficulties, fever, chills, shortness of breath, chest pain, fatigue, confusion etc. Sputum samples may be expectorated or induced. The sample specimen is sputum produced by productive cough (usually induced by deep cough). Sometimes if the cough doesn’t produce sputum, chest tap or salty mist can loosen sputum from the lung. When sputum collection fails alternative method known as bronchoscopy to perform to collect the bronchial wash. Untreated complications in chronic stages can lead to COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), lung abscess, pneumonia etc. Additional tests include microscopic examination eg. Gram stain. Other tests for confirmatory studies include ESR, CRP, CBC, X-ray studies, ultrasound, CT Scan, MRI etc.

General Instructions

Sample Requirement: Specimen - Sputum. Test Preparation: None.

NOTE - Sample for specimen collections may vary based on the patient’s condition/cases according to the patient’s presenting complaints/signs or symptoms:

SPECIMEN REQUIREMENT (Special or Rare Cases) - As instructed and guided by Physician / Clinician / Pathologist / as per Laboratory’s requirements, according to procedures and protocols.

Sample Requirement: Sputum

Test Preparation: None

This Multi-Specialty Clinical Referral Laboratory RT DIAGNOSTICS provides precise and accurate tests with an extensive range of testing services to the medical centres to help in the diagnosis and identification of pathology in the test specimens for infectious diseases and also to evaluate the function of organ systems of the patient. It prevents further complications and helps to stabilize and restore health to near normalcy at the earliest without delay.