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Aug 5, 2021Print this page

Sterile Flocked Collection Devices: How to Use Flocked Swabs

How to Use Flocked swabs like HydraFlock and PurFlock Ultra

Proper specimen collection is critical for rapid and accurate diagnosis of clinical specimens. Individually wrapped Puritan HydraFlock® and PurFlock Ultra® swabs are sterile, ready-to-use devices for the collection of clinical samples. This post details how to get the best possible samples using Puritan flocked swabs. 

About Puritan Flocked Swabs 

Puritan provides a variety of flocked swab tip sizes and various shaped handles for specific applications. Due to our proprietary methods, Puritan also holds both manufacturing and device patents for flocked swabs in the United States, Canada, Japan, Europe, and Australia. 

For sterilization, each swab is individually wrapped in a medical grade gamma or EO compatible pouch. Gamma or EO sterilization is marked on the product labels.

How to Use Sterile Flocked Swabs

  1. Peel open sterile pouch.

  2. Remove swab and collect specimen. Ensure the applicator tip only touches the suspected infectious area to minimize potential contamination.

  3. Swab should be processed immediately according to internal laboratory instructions.

  4. Alternatively, swab may be placed in a sterile tube marked with patient information and transferred to laboratory for microbiological analysis.

  5. Disposal of tubes and swabs must be done according to laboratory regulations for biohazard waste.

How to Properly Store Puritan Flocked Swabs

Store Puritan HydraFlock® and PurFlock Ultra® swabs at 2-30°C.

What Are the Limitations of Flocked Swabs?

  • Reliable specimen collection depends on many factors including collection and handling technique, specimen conditions and timing. Best results are achieved when specimens are processed shortly after the time of collection.

  • If delays are anticipated, swab specimens are recommended to be stored in a suitable buffered preservative until it is processed. Refer to corresponding reference standard and procedure for optimum collection techniques.1-2

  • Storage temperature outside of recommended range should be avoided.

Flocked Swabs: Precautions and Usage Tips

  • For single use only, re-use may cause a risk of infection and/or inaccurate results.

  • Do not re-pack.

  • Do not re-sterilize.

  • The use of this product in conjunction with a rapid diagnostic test or instrument should be validated by the user.

  • Do not apply excessive force when collecting swab samples from patients as it may result in unintended breakage of the swab handle.

  • Follow directions for use as demonstrated below, the manufacturer cannot be held responsible for any unauthorized use of the product.

  • All clinical specimens may contain infectious microorganism and should be handled with care. Appropriate protective equipment should be worn. Laboratory and biosafety guidelines should be followed when handling a clinical specimen.

  • Swabs should not be used if peel pouch is damaged or if expiration date printed on label has passed.

  • To be handled by trained personnel only.

Looking for more? Compare Puritan's Flocked Swabs: HydraFlock® vs. PurFlock Ultra® here.

Want more information about the usage of Puritan’s flocked swabs and specimen collection devices? Click below to contact one of our product specialists for more details. 



1. Miller, J.M. 1999. A guide to specimen management in clinical microbiology. American Society for Microbiology. Washington, DC

2. "Media Transport Systems." Puritan Medical Products. Puritan Medical Products LLC, n.d. Web. 17 Apr. 2014. <http://www.puritanmedproducts.com>.

Topics: Flocked Swabs, Specimen Collection Procedure


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