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Definition: Secretions ejected from the lungs, bronchi and trachea by coughing and spitting (Latin spuere: spit). Sputum consists of mucus and may contain pus and/or microorganisms; specimens obtained via the mouth normally contain saliva. Sputum is examined microbiologically in the diagnosis of lung infections
Source: Dictionary of Microbiology & Molecular Biology. Hoboken: Wiley, 2006. Credo Reference. Web. 17 August 2012.