Sputum Test

Aspiration pneumonia

Dr. Nithin Jayan
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Nithin Jayan, MBBS, DNB
Last Updated on May 29, 2014
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Test : Aspiration pneumonia

Indications : A sputum test for aspiration pneumonia is ordered when the person shows symptoms of lung infection and produces foul smelling or bloody sputum.

Sputum collection is done early in the morning. The patient must refrain from eating or drinking before the test. It is also essential to brush teeth and rinse mouth well prior to the test, but avoid using antiseptic mouthwash.

Sputum may be brought up by deep coughing (expectorated) or it may be or induced with the help of sterile saline or glycerine aerosol. The coughed up sputum is collected into a sterile cup provided by the laboratory.

A small portion of the sputum is stained and observed through the microscope to detect the presence of bacteria. Another portion of the sputum is added to growth medium and allowed to grow in culture.

Physiology : Aspiration pneumonia is a condition which involves inflammation of the lungs or the airways. It occurs due to inhalation of a foreign particle, such as vomit, liquid or food into the lung leading to bacterial infection. The condition also occurs due to esophageal disorders.

Symptoms include chest pain, foul smelling sputum, sputum containing pus or blood, bluish coloration of skin due to lack of oxygen, fever, shortness of breath.

Normal Range : Negative

Interpretation : The presence of bacteria, such as Peptostreptococcus species or Fusobacterium species, confirms aspiration pneumonia diagnosis.



References : +



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