Clinical Microbiology: Bugs & Drugs

Sunday, 03 June 2018 13:24

Microbiologists vs Biothreat agents

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If you are looking for an exciting career, consider a clinical microbiology! On top of common pathogens like Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli, clinical microbiologists also deal with all sorts of rare microbes, including bioterrorism agents! Why you should always be prepared for a 'weirdo' microbe in the clinical lab, on Bugs & Drugs.
Public Health England reported the first case of ceftriaxone treatment failure for gonorrhea -- what happens next? Will intravenous (IV) antibiotics become required to treat gonorrhea within the next few years? There are several ways that clinical labs can get involved to help prevent the spread of these antimicrobial-resistant N. gonorrhoeae “superbugs” so we can continue to have a simple and effective empirical treatment.
It’s Lyme Time! As summer approaches, ticks and people will meet up once again. Diagnostic tests for Lyme disease may change, but these changes should always based on scientific evidence.
Monday, 14 May 2018 16:54

Is It Really about the MIC?

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The use of beta-lactamase combination agents like piperacillin-tazobactam to treat ESBL-producing isolates has always been somewhat controversial. Results from the new MERINO clinical trial suggest reviving ESBL testing. Romney Humphries explains why continued protocol tweaking helps laboratorians move closer to the perhaps-impossible goal of perfecting ESBL screening.
Detection of antibiotic resistance is vital to proper treatment and containment of potential outbreaks. The Antibiotic Resistance (AR) Laboratory Network connects healthcare facilities, state and local labs, and CDC to quickly identify and contain drug-resistance before itcan spread. Learn more about the AR Lab Network in a free webinar, summarized on the latest Bugs and Drugs.
Monday, 16 April 2018 11:13

More Than Just Strep in Strep Throat?

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Strep throat isn’t just Strep anymore! The most recent organism linked to bacterial pharyngitis is the anaerobic bacterium Fusobacterium necrophorum. Find out how this and other organisms that cause pharyngitis are diagnosed.
Antimicrobial susceptibility testing is a common topic on Bugs & Drugs, but where to get started? The ASM-CLSI Webinar series is a great place to learn AST foundational concepts important for all clinical microbiologists.
Monday, 02 April 2018 09:02

Fusarium: A Pathogen of the Modern Era

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The genus Fusarium contains a globally distributed group of molds which cause severe infections in immunocompromised individuals – a population which is rapidly increasing due to recent advances in medicine. Here, we review diagnosis, treatment, and potential for prevention of infections caused by this organism.
The CDC is warning about the possibility of gonorrhea becoming “untreatable”. In part one of a three-part series, we will discuss the long history of antimicrobial treatment for gonococcal infections, and find out why antimicrobial resistance in Neisseria gonorrhoeae has been classified as an urgent threat to public health.
Patients require care around the clock and clinical labs are a critical component of patient care. Clinical laboratory technologists work day - and night - to help make a difference.
How can healthcare providers learn the best practices for prescribing antibiotics? A new CDC course will help explain the basics – best of all, it’s free! We also celebrate the one-year blog-iversary of Bugs & Drugs. 
Duodenoscope contamination has been the source of hospital outbreaks, including carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae. A new scope surveillance culturing protocol hopes to prevent future outbreaks from occurring.
Multiplex molecular gastrointestinal pathogen panels promise increased ease, speed, and throughput. But do these tests sometimes produce too many results? And what is lost when tests switch from culture-based to molecular methods?
In clinical microbiology, “intermediate” —the state of neither up nor down—means both “diagnostic uncertainty” AND “susceptible with increased exposures.” How can we cut one and not lose the other?
Monday, 05 February 2018 15:11

Lab testing – the money talk

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Bugs & Drugs discusses the delicate issue of clinical lab finances: both the lab and hospital leadership must connect the dots and determine what tests best fit the interests of the patients and the hospital.
What types of data can help a clinical microbiology lab improve their performance? The latest Hot Topic provides suggestions on measuring and analyzing data points to reduce the risk of error.
Diagnosis of diarrhea caused by parasites is an important service provided by the clinical laboratory, but testing stool using the ova and parasite (O&P) exam is complex and time consuming. Here, we review the O&P, its limitations, and how the clinical laboratory can help ensure the most effective use of this test.
Clinical microbiology labs often receive multiple specimens for periprosthetic joint infections. How many is enough?
Monday, 08 January 2018 16:16

January 2018 ASMClinMicro News Round-Up

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A new year brings new career-promoting events and ways to participate in the ASM clin micro community. We summarize the latest in the first Bugs & Drugs post of 2018!
Thursday, 14 December 2017 13:52

Best of Bugs & Drugs 2017

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2017 was a momentous year here at Clinical Microbiology: Bugs & Drugs, since this is the year that we launched! Here are the highlights of the first nine months of published posts!
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