Vaginal swab collection accident


Hello. I self-collected a vaginal swab with a Sh:24 kit today but there was a horrible accident.
The first time I tried I just couldn’t push it further down. I took the swab out and changed my position, and succeeded the second time.
However, afterwards I started to have painful urination (everything was normal before the collection, now urination is very painful). I realized the first time I probably inserted it to the urethra by mistake?!! I’ll go to GP tomorrow to test for UTI. But in the meantime I’m really worried… If I inserted the swab to my urethra first, and then took it out and inserted the same one again to the vagina, am I bringing bacteria from the urethra to the vagina? Would there be any serious consequences?
Thank you!


Hello @cinnzia

Thanks for your question. Don’t worry - the urethra is too narrow for you to insert the swab into it, I don’t think that you could have done this.

Absolutely the right thing to see your GP if you still have pain passing urine, but I think it is unlikely to be related to taking the swab.

Hope this is reassuring and that everything settles down.

Many thanks



Thank you so much for the reply.

The pain got better today but I went to the GP surgery anyways and saw a practice nurse, who thought it was actually possible… I took a urine sample and the results are not back yet. But I forgot to mention my concern about cross-infection. If I did insert the swab to two different places… should I be worried about it? Sorry for the stupid question!


Hello @cinnzia

We would have no concerns about cross infection as the infections that we test for can be present in the urethra and the vagina and we would treat if they were present in either or both.

Glad to hear that your pain improved.

Many thanks, Paula


Thanks for the answer and for your patience!


Hello! I’m having the same issue and I’m actually worried that I did the swap wrong. I was completely fine before but now it really hurts when I pee! Do you mind sharing your experience with me, please? I’m a bit worried here and I’m not sure how to proceed!

Thank you :blush:


I went to see a doctor eventually… and she was quite certain that I couldn’t possibly insert the swab into the wrong place. And she did an external & pelvic exam on me everything was fine. She seemed a lot more convincing to me than the practice nurse I saw earlier. I did have a bit of UTI but symtoms were already minimal (she said it could be due to external irritation). I waited a few days and tested again and the UTI was gone on its own.
Hope your symptoms go away soon. If they persist do let your doctor know. Good luck!


Thank you so much for posting this. I feel so embarrassed the exact same thing happened to me today. I had much trouble with the swab , and changed position tried again and no problems. Later a lot of pain when urinating and very small amount of blood. First thing I thought “I got the wrong hole !” I think I too may go get it checked in case , and it’s probably likely I didn’t actually put it in the urethra just maybe caused some external trauma ? I had been having a lot of trouble with Vaginismus , so when it wouldn’t go in I kept pushing it ! It didn’t occur til later I had the wrong hole ! I feel so embarrassed , and I’m so thankful your post was here thanks for sharing your experiences.