What is the role of blood cultures in the evaluation of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP)?

Updated: Oct 31, 2019
  • Author: Stephanie L Baer, MD; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

In all patients with CAP who meet criteria for hospital admission, obtain blood cultures prior to administering antibiotics because pneumonia due to some bacterial pathogens, such as S pneumoniae and H influenzae, is frequently associated with positive blood cultures. The overall yield from blood cultures is low, as viral and many bacterial pathogens such as M catarrhalis are not often associated with bacteremia. [25]


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