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Sputum test

Sputum test

Overview

A sputum sample is obtained by coughing deeply and expelling the material that comes from the lungs into a specimen container. The sample is transferred to a slide and examined under a microscope. A positive result indicates a fungal infection in the lungs.

Review Date 12/13/2017

Updated by: Jatin M. Vyas, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Assistant in Medicine, Division of Infectious Disease, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.