What is the role of microbiology in the workup of bacterial sepsis?

Updated: Feb 05, 2019
  • Author: Amber Mahmood Bokhari, MBBS; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Organism identification via culture in a patient who fulfills the definition of sepsis is highly supportive of a sepsis diagnosis but is unnecessary. The rationale behind its lack of inclusion in the diagnostic criteria for sepsis is that a culprit organism goes unidentified in up to half of patients who present with sepsis, and a positive culture result is not required to make a decision regarding treatment with empiric antibiotics.


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