If you have any questions, please contact your healthcare provider or Toronto Public Health at 416-338-7600.
Screening for Active Tuberculosis (TB) Disease
If a person has a positive TB skin test or (IGRA blood test) other tests are needed to see if a person has active TB disease. If a person has TB disease in the lungs, the bacteria can also spread to other people. Screening for TB disease usually includes a check-up by a health professional for signs and symptoms of active TB disease, a chest x-ray and sputum collection.
Up to three plastic bottles to collect sputum samples will be given to you. Follow the steps below to collect your sputum. Do this everyday right after waking up in the morning. Use a different plastic bottle each day.
Do not eat or drink, brush your teeth, smoke or use mouthwash before you collect your sputum early in the morning.
Remove the plastic bottle from the plastic bag. Do not remove the lab form from the bag. Open the plastic bottle. Do not touch the inside of the bottle or the cap.
Breathe in deeply 2-3 times and then cough deeply from the chest to bring up sputum from the lungs (thick sputum collects in the lungs overnight). Try to cough up at least 1 to 2 teaspoons
Spit the sputum into the plastic bottle. Close the plastic bottle cap tightly.
Place bottle in the plastic bag. Remove the blue plastic band from the bag to close it.
Refrigerate the bag with the sputum bottle right away to keep it cold. Do not freeze the sputum bottle.
Wash your hands.
When the sputum samples are collected, tell your nurse or home visitor. He/she will pick up the bags with the sputum bottles and send them to the lab for testing.
This information is also available in the following languages. To request a copy, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 416-338-7600 and ask for the TB program.
- አማርኛ / Amheric
- العربية / Arabic
- বাংলা / Bengali
- 中文 / Chinese
- فارسی / Farsi
- Tagalog / Filipino
- Français / French
- ગુજરાતી / Gujarati
- हिन्दी / Hindi
- Magyar nyelv / Hungarian
- 한국어 / Korean
- ਪੰਜਾਬੀ / Punjabi
- русский / Russian
- Afsoomaali / Somali
- Español / Spanish
- བོད་སྐད་ / Tibetan
- தமிழ் / Tamil
- اردو / Urdu
- Tiếng Việt / Vietnamese