Clinical Microbiology: Bugs & Drugs

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!
Monday, 11 December 2017 14:37

Xenodiagnosis: Using a Pest as a Test

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Most diagnostic tests are performed on agar plates or in plastic bottles, tubes, or wells, but in the past certain elusive infections were identified by a decidedly more exotic method. This post explores the technique of xenodiagnosis, in which an animal (usually the vector that carries the disease of interest) is exposed to a patient’s blood and monitored to see if it develops the infection.
Toxoplasma gondii is a fantastically interesting parasite that you can find in a variety of places in the world and can end up in a variety of places inside of you!
Diagnostic tools are the backbone of many public health programs; we need them to assess the molecular characteristics and physiologies of potential pathogens. This week, Bugs & Drugs features our best diagnostic tools blog posts, with interviews, reference articles, and advice on how to implement these tools to increase public health.
Fosfomycin susceptibility testing is a challenge for laboratories. The testing intricacies for fosfomycin are discussed.
Monday, 06 November 2017 18:17

Considerations in point-of-care diagnostics

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How will point-of-care diagnostics change clinical microbiology? ASM provides resources with educational opportunities and important considerations on implementing evolving technology.
ASM provides resources to review nomenclature, susceptibilty testing, and transmission prevention of multidrug-resistant organisms
Monday, 23 October 2017 11:51

Point-of-Care Testing for Influenza

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“Do I have the flu?” Influenza point of care tests may be able to answer this question quickly. However, despite the simplicity and speed of these tests, they come with many “behind the scenes” considerations to be addressed prior to implementation. In this post, we review some significant technical, biological, and regulatory issues of influenza point-of-care testing.
Blood draw done without the gloves on is poor technique. Noncompliance to proper disinfection techniques of the draw site is the primary reason for blood culture contamination. Today's Bugs & Drugs post highlights the importance of updating staff on the whys and hows of preventing this contamination.
Monday, 09 October 2017 10:34

Non-culture based fungal diagnostic tests

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Timely diagnosis of fungal infections is sometimes impaired by the slow growth in culture or low yield of culture for certain organisms. Let’s discuss some of the non-culture based fungal diagnostic tests that are available in clinical microbiology laboratories.
Monday, 02 October 2017 15:40

The importance of antiseptics

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Antiseptics are found in both home and healthcare facilities and play an important role in infection prevention. We highlight a recent Applied and Environmental Microbiology study suggesting home use of antiseptics may contribute to MRSA spread and provide resources to review the mechanisms and applications of different chemical antiseptics.
Molecular techniques allow us to determine bacterial relatedness in ways previous generations couldn’t, and because of this, several species have been renamed or recategorized in recent years. However, this can cause chaos and miscommunication in the clinical lab! Here are three stories of recent taxonomical change suggestions and how they have been resolved.  
Anaerobic infections offer a unique set of challenges in diagnosing and antibiotic susceptibility testing. The most recent Hot Topic in Clinical Microbiology offers an opportunity to learn best practices in diagnosis of anaerobic infections. We also provide recent Journal of Clinical Microbiology resources to complement the presentation. 
While Lyme disease is the tick-borne illness people associate most readily with deer tick bites, the incidence of Babesia microti in the Northeast US has been increasing steadily. There are a range of tools, some new but many old, that can aid the diagnostician in detection of this important pathogen.
Taxonomic splitting of bacterial species can change AST recommendation. What should clinical microbiologists do when new species are assigned to the Enterobacteriaceae or when species are renamed? Romney Humphries addresses this problem in this week's Bugs & Drugs.
Recent outbreaks in clinical and teaching microbiology labs emphasize the importance of good biosafety practices. This week we provide resources to help brush up on biosafety, one of the most important aspects of working in a microbiology lab.
The Journal of Clinical Microbiology publishes everything clinical, from applications of new diagnostic technologies to global epidemiological reports. On this week's Bugs & Drugs, we spoke with JCM Editor-in-Chief Alexander McAdam about the resources JCM provides to clinical microbiologists and recent changes in the journal.  
Monday, 07 August 2017 14:45

Have Microscope … Will Travel

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Interested in applying your laboratory skills in resource-limited areas? Volunteer work can be very fulfilling. Opportunities and experiences are discussed in this week's Bugs & Drugs.
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