Pathology Handbook

Mouth swab

Clinical Indications

Test Includes

Culture for bacteria and fungi; antibiotic sensitivities on potential pathogens

Request Form 

Request via ICE


On request during routine working hours

Specific Criteria

Please give detailed clinical information, including date of onset/contact with the suspected infection, and any current, or intended, antibiotic therapy

Turnaround Time

48 hours for fungal culture; up to 72 hours for antibiotic sensitivities on potential pathogens


Bacterial culture swab in transport medium


Routine swab small


Samples should be transported to laboratory immediately

Causes for Rejection

Unlabelled / inadequately labelled sample
Delay in sample reaching laboratory

Lab Handling

Samples should be processed as soon as possible