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Gonorrhea Test

How It Is Done

Direct smear

In a direct smear, a sample of body fluid is taken from the affected area. In adults, these areas may include the urethra, cervix, rectum, or eye.

  • To collect a sample from the urethra or rectum, your health professional will insert a swab into the opening of your urethra or rectum to collect a sample.
  • To collect a sample from the cervix, you will be asked to take off your clothes below the waist and drape a paper or cloth covering around your waist. You will then lie on your back on an examination table with your feet raised and supported by stirrups. This allows your health professional to examine your vagina and genital area. Your health professional will insert an instrument with curved sides (speculum camera.gif) into your vagina. The speculum gently spreads apart the vaginal walls so the inside of the vagina and the cervix can be examined. Samples are collected from the cervix with a swab or small brush.
  • To collect a sample from your eye, your health professional will gently brush the insides of your lower and upper eyelids with a swab.

Urine sample

If a urine sample is collected for nucleic acid amplification testing (such as PCR or LCR testing), do not urinate for 2 hours before the test. Do not wipe the genital area clean before urinating. Collect the first part of your urine stream, immediately as you begin urinating.

There are home test kits you can use to collect a swab or urine sample and bring it to the lab for testing.

How It Feels

Collecting a sample of fluid from the urethra, anus, or rectum may cause mild discomfort or pain.

Collecting a sample from the cervix may cause mild discomfort. Most women find that the procedure feels similar to a Pap test or pelvic examination. Some women feel slight cramping while the speculum is inside the vagina.

Collecting a sample from the eye is usually painless unless the eyelids have sores on them.

Collecting a urine sample does not normally cause any discomfort.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 28, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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