Validation of self-swab for virologic confirmation of influenza virus infections in a community setting

J Infect Dis. 2012 Feb 15;205(4):631-4. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jir803. Epub 2011 Dec 23.


Few studies have investigated the validity of self-collected nose and throat swabs for influenza confirmation in community settings. We followed outpatients with confirmed influenza with sequential measurement of viral loads and applied log-linear regression models to the viral shedding patterns. Among 176 outpatients with confirmed influenza, the detection of virus and quantitative viral loads obtained from self-swabs was consistent with statistical predictions based on earlier and later measurements, suggesting that self-collected nose and throat swabs can be a valid alternative for virologic confirmation of influenza A or B infection in a community setting.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Clinical Laboratory Techniques / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Influenza, Human / diagnosis*
  • Influenza, Human / virology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nose / virology*
  • Orthomyxoviridae / isolation & purification*
  • Outpatients
  • Pharynx / virology*
  • Self-Examination / methods*
  • Specimen Handling / methods*
  • Viral Load / methods*
  • Virus Shedding
  • Young Adult