The recovery of upper respiratory tract bacteria on laboratory media from a variety of swabs and swab-transport media kits was examined. Organisms studied included strains of Streptococcus pyogenes, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus, Neisseria meningitidis and Haemophilus influenzae. Although a wide range of results was obtained with regard to variables such as the type of swab or swab-transport media kit used, the time of plating, the temperature of storage of swab-transport media kits, and the nature of the suspension of the organisms, it was generally noted that recovery of organisms was better from swabs held in their plastic containers prior to plating than from swabs held in transport medium.
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