What is the test?
Your doctor will request a throat culture if he or she suspects you have
How do I prepare?
no special preparation for a throat culture. Do not gargle or use mouthwash
before having your throat culture done, as this may alter the results of the
How is the test done?
A laboratory technician will use a long cotton-tipped Q-tip or swab to
collect cells from the back of your throat by swiping it quickly. These cells
are then placed in a medium, which will grow into a culture over a period of 24
to 48 hours. This culture is examined by a microbiologist to determine if it is
beta strep, which causes strep throat.
and when will I get my test results?
Throat culture results are available as soon as the cells have cultured,
typically within two days. The results will be sent directly to your doctor,
who will share them with you. Rapid strep A testing is
available upon physician request.
is the test performed?
A throat culture may be performed in your doctor’s office and sent to the
medical center’s laboratory for culturing. Or you may go to any of Cayuga Medical
Center’s five Laboratory
sites. The locations are: Cayuga Medical
Center at 101 Dates Drive in Ithaca; the Cayuga
at 1301 Trumansburg Road,
Ithaca; 5 Evergreen Street in Dryden; Convenient
Care at Ithaca on Arrowwood Drive off Warren Road; and Convenient Care at Cortland on Route 281 and Commons Avenue.
If you have questions regarding lab testing, you can reach the Cayuga
Medical Center Laboratory at (607) 274-4474.