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Diagnosis of gonorrhoea in women.
  1. R N Thin,
  2. E J Shaw


    The results of Gram stains and cultures from 145 women with uncomplicated ano-genital gonorrhoea are presented. The site which gave the highest yield of gonococci was the cervix. Equally good results were obtained with Stuart's transport medium and direct plating in the clinic. Positive results from rectal specimens alone were obtained from 8.4% of the 119 women in whom the rectum was examined. In 89 women the results of rectal specimens taken through a proctoscope were compared with those of swabs passed blindly up the anal canal. When Stuart's transport medium was used swabs taken through a proctoscope gave better results than the swabs taken blindly; the latter gave more positive results when direct plating was used. Thus when Stuart's medium is used a proctoscope is essential for the collection of rectal samples. Up to three sets of investigations were carried out where necessary, but 95% of the 145 cases were diagnosed on the results of the first set. However, only 54% of those patients diagnosed at their first visit had positive Gram-stain results. Further refinement of culture results is unlikely to improve diagnostic yield; what is needed is better, rapid diagnosis in the clinic.

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