Nasal Swab Procedure – Virology/Mid-Turbinate
Respiratory virus detection hinges many factors, among them, the type of sample collected, the time to collection after symptom onset, and the transport and storage of the sample prior to testing. Sample collection and storage are critical components to respiratory virus testing. Improper sampling may result in an inadequate sample, rendering a diagnostic test inconclusive or incorrect.
This is the swab used to sample the mid-turbinate it is a special swab, available with a stopper on the shaft indicating the depth of sampling at the turbinates. The mid turbinate swab guides the collector to the proper depth in order to ensure that the proper depth is reached. There are two sizes of the mid turbinate swab, one for neonates and infants up to 3 years old. The larger is for patients aged 3 and older.
The videos in this series were produced in partnership with Dr. J. Michael Miller, Director of Microbiology Technical Services, a private consulting service for diagnostic labs. Dr. Miller previously spent 35 years with the Center for Disease Control (CDC), and has had a long term interest in specimen management and clinical relevance.
The views and opinions expressed in these videos are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect COPAN's official policy, recommendation or position. Always read the manufacturer’s package insert for specific instructions regarding specimen collection and transport for the type of test kit being used.