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Various ideas have been suggested for the macroscopic examination of sputum preparatory to the microscopic examination. The one most extensively in use is the spreading of the sputum between two plates of glass, the under side of the lower one being blackened. I have not found this to be particularly satisfactory, inasmuch as, through repeated sterilizations of the glass, the blackened under surface becomes scratched and in part removed. I prefer a heavy plate of glass under which is laid a piece of black paper; the sputum, after being spread between the two plates of glass, is held against the black background. By this means the black surface remains the same, there is no impairment of its surface, and it may be used indefinitely.
The method of using two large pieces of glass offered several objections which I was unable to overcome. The first was that in spreading the sputum
GOODMAN EH. A NEW METHOD FOR THE SPREADING OF SPUTUM PREPARATORY TO A MICROSCOPIC EXAMINATION.. JAMA. 1907;XLVIII(26):2187. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.25220520017003g
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