How are samples obtained for viral culture of influenza viruses?

Updated: Aug 07, 2020
  • Author: Hien H Nguyen, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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For viral culture, nasopharyngeal samples are obtained with Dacron swabs and sent in appropriate viral transport media (eg, multimicrobe [M4] transport media) to the laboratory to be cultured in several lines of cells. A laboratory diagnosis of influenza is established once specific cytopathic effect is observed or hemadsorption testing findings are positive. For example, staining the infected cultured cell lines with fluorescent antibody confirms the diagnosis.

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