Test Code

CPT Codes

Preferred Specimen

Transport Container

Transport Temperature
RT- 48 HRS

Setup Schedule
Set Up:
Report Available:

Reference Range

Clinical Significance
A throat culture is a laboratory diagnostic test to find a bacterial or fungal infection in the throat.
Examples of infections that may be found during a throat culture include:

Candida albicans
This fungus causes thrush, an infection of the mouth and tongue and sometimes of the throat.
Group A streptococcus
This bacteria can cause strep throat, scarlet fever, and rheumatic fever. If strep throat is likely, a test called a rapid strep test (or quick strep) may be done before a throat culture. With a rapid strep test, results are ready in 10 minutes instead of 1 to 2 days with a throat culture. If the rapid strep test results are positive, antibiotics can be started immediately. A throat culture is more accurate than the rapid strep test. The rapid strep test can give a negative result when strep bacteria are present. When the results of a rapid strep test are negative, many health professionals recommend doing a throat culture to make sure that strep throat is not present.

Neisseria meningitidis
This bacteria can cause meningitis. If bacteria grows in the culture, other tests may be done to check which antibiotic will treat the infection best. This is called susceptibility or sensitivity testing.

Performing Laboratory
LMH -  Microbiology x3758 or 3759

The CPT Codes provided in this document are based on AMA guidelines and are for informational purposes only. CPT coding is the sole responsibility of the billing party. Please direct any questions regarding coding to the payor being billed. Any Profile/panel component may be ordered separately. Reflex tests are performed at an additional charge.