"For the microbiologic diagnosis
of gonorrhea, culture is necessary for
anti-microbial susceptibility testing, due to the
large numbers of resistant strains.
In males, the diagnosis is based upon
Gram staining of a urethral exudate.
the normal flora of the vagina confounds direct
diagnosis by Gram stain.
Due to the fact that N. gonorrheae is
rapidly killed by drying, the culture plate must
be streaked in the examination room.
The left side of the plate contains
chocolate agar, whereas the right side of the
plate contains chocolate agar plus antibiotics.
Occasional strains of gonococcus
will be resistant to the antibiotics in the agar,
so both sides must be streaked."
Some institutions have recombinant DNA
test for the gonococcus that eliminates the need
for Thayer-Martin plates, but you may still have
to use this culture method in many hospitals or
1999 KUMC Pathology and the University of Kansas,
used with permission; courtesy of Dr. James
Fishback, Department of Pathology, University of
Kansas Medical Center.