Lab Test

Specimen Collection Manual: Cervical Specimens



  • Dacron or Rayon swab.
  • ESwab Collection System.
  • UTM or UVT transport medium.

Specimen Collection Criteria

  • Use a vaginal speculum to facilitate visualization of the cervix and to prevent the swabs from touching the sides of the vagina.
  • Using a large sterile dacron or rayon swab, carefully remove the mucus from the endocervix. This swab should be discarded. Cervical exudates and mucus are not appropriate specimens.
  • Using the ESwab, carefully rub the endocervical zone of the cervix, rolling the swab approximately 10 seconds to assure that the swab contains cervical epithelial cells.
  • Carefully remove the swab to prevent contamination with vaginal flora.
  • Place the swab into an appropriate transport medium and send to the specimen to the Laboratory.
    • For the culture and antimicrobial susceptibility testing of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, the ESwab Collection System must be used.
    • For culture of Chlamydia trachomatis or for amplified (PCR) testing of N. gonorrhoeae and C. trachomatis, the swab must be placed in UTM or UVT transport medium.
eswab medium universal viral transport media Universal Transport Media UTM_3

Rejection Criteria

  • Do not use expired media. Check expiration date on all media prior to use.


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