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Volume 8, Number 10—October 2002
Bioterrorism-related Anthrax

Bioterrorism-related Anthrax

Surface Sampling Methods for Bacillus anthracis Spore Contamination

Wayne T. Sanderson*Comments to Author , Misty J. Hein*, Lauralynn Taylor*, Brian D. Curwin*, Gregory M. Kinnes*, Teresa A. Seitz*, Tanja Popovic*, Harvey T. Holmes*, Molly E. Kellum*, Sigrid K. McAllister*, David N. Whaley*, Edward A. Tupin†, Timothy Walker†, Jennifer A. Freed†, Dorothy S. Small‡, Brian Klusaritz‡, and John H. Bridges§
Author affiliations: *Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA; †Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Atlanta, Georgia, USA; ‡The IT Corporation, Washington, D.C., USA; §United States Postal Service, Washington, D.C., USA;

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Table 3

Comparison of wet swab, wipe, and HEPA vacuum sock sampling methods, Brentwood postal facility, December 17–19, 2001

Methods compared No.
samples No. concordant samplesa
No. discordant samplesb
Cohen’s Kappa
Positive (%) Negative (%) Positive method Positive method
Wet swab vs. wipe 67 35 (52) 8 (12) Wet swab = 1 Wipe = 23 0.24
Wet swab vs. HEPA vacuum 58 27 (47) 10 (17) Wet swab = 0 HEPA vacuum = 21 0.31
Wipe vs. HEPA vacuum 58 44 (76) 5 (9) Wipe = 5 HEPA vacuum = 4 0.43

aTwo samples from the same location are concordant if both positive or both negative for presence of Bacillus anthracis spores.
bTwo samples from the same location are discordant if one is positive and the other negative for presence of B. anthracis spores.

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