The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary







A dipstick is a stick of paper or cardboard with reagents to test the chemical properties of a liquid.

In medicine, dipsticks are used to test urine samples for hemoglobin, nitrite (produced by bacteria in a urinary tract infection), protein, glucose and occasionally urobilinogen or ketones.

The ideal urine sample is fresh mid-stream urine; this has the least chance of being contaminated.

In internal combustion engines, the dipstick is a metal strip removed from the engine block to determine the quantity of lubricating oil in the engine. Generally the procedure for reading the dipstick is to remove it, clean it with a rag or paper towel to provide a fresh surface for the oil to contact, then reinsert it. The oil level is compared to markings on the dipstick which indicate the oil level.

In British Slang, the term 'Dipstick' is used to describe someone of inferior intellect. "That referee is a right dipstick".

Last updated: 10-29-2005 02:13:46