What is the role of cultures in the diagnosis of amebiasis?

Updated: Jul 19, 2019
  • Author: Vinod K Dhawan, MD, FACP, FRCPC, FIDSA; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Cultures can be performed either with fecal or rectal biopsy specimens or with liver abscess aspirates. [17] Culture has a success rate of 50-70%, but it is technically difficult. Overall, culture is less sensitive than microscopy.

Xenic cultivation, first introduced in 1925, is defined as the growth of the parasite in the presence of an undefined flora. This technique is still in use today, using modified Locke-egg media. Axenic cultivation, first achieved in 1961, involves growing the parasite in the absence of any other metabolizing cells. Only a few strains of E dispar have been reported to be viable in axenic cultures.

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