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Plague  Lesson 7
 Veterinarian Issues

Laboratory Specimen Collection Procedures

  • Lymph node aspirates
    • Due to the large amount of surrounding edema, care must be taken to be sure the bubo itself is aspirated.
    • If little or no fluid can be aspirated, 1 cc of non-bacteriostatic saline solution can be injected into the bubo and then aspirated back into the syringe.
  • Serology
    • Acute and convalescent serum samples of 0.5 ml should be collected at least 14 days apart.
    • Note that serology is only of use for retrospective confirmation of diagnosis; acute serology alone is of no benefit, since early in the disease patients are often seronegative.
  • Pharyngeal Swab
    • If there is evidence of plague pneumonia, pharyngeal swab should be made, using culturettes.
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Page last reviewed February 12, 2007
Page last modified September 7, 2004

  • Content source: CDC Emergency Risk Communication Branch (ERCB), Division of Emergency Operations (DEO), National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID)
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