At a Glance
Why Get Tested?
To detect and identify the cause of bacterial pneumonia or some other lower respiratory tract infections; to monitor the efficacy of treatment
When to Get Tested?
When you have symptoms associated with a lower respiratory tract infection; when you have been treated for bacterial pneumonia or any other lower respiratory tract infection
A sputum sample (deep respiratory secretions, not saliva), usually collected first thing in the morning; sometimes, depending on the infection, up to 3 sputum samples might be collected over consecutive days.
Test Preparation Needed?
You may be instructed to rinse your mouth out with water prior to collection and to avoid food for 1-2 hours before the sample is collected.