GEN - Clinical: Bacterial Culture, Aerobic

Test Catalog

Test Name

Test ID: GEN    
Bacterial Culture, Aerobic

Useful For Suggests clinical disorders or settings where the test may be helpful

Detecting bacteria responsible for infections of sterile body fluids, tissues, or wounds

Testing Algorithm Delineates situations when tests are added to the initial order. This includes reflex and additional tests.

When this test is ordered, the reflex tests may be performed and charged.

Clinical Information Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test

Sterile Body Fluids and Normally Sterile Tissues:

In response to infection, fluid may accumulate in any body cavity.


Wound, Abscess, Exudates:

Skin and soft tissue infections can occur as a result of a break in the skin surface, or they can occur as complications of surgery; trauma; human, animal, or insect bites; or diseases that interrupt a mucosal or skin surface. Specimen collection is of utmost importance for these specimen types. For most open lesions and abscesses, remove the superficial flora by decontaminating the skin before collecting a specimen from the advancing margin or base. A closed abscess is the specimen site of choice. Aspirate the abscess contents with a syringe.

Reference Values Describes reference intervals and additional information for interpretation of test results. May include intervals based on age and sex when appropriate. Intervals are Mayo-derived, unless otherwise designated. If an interpretive report is provided, the reference value field will state this.

No growth or usual flora

Identification of probable pathogens

Interpretation Provides information to assist in interpretation of the test results

Any microorganism found where no resident flora is present is considered significant and is reported. For specimens contaminated with the usual bacterial flora, bacteria that are potentially pathogenic are identified.

Cautions Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances

No significant cautionary statements.


This test is not intended for medicolegal use.

Clinical Reference Recommendations for in-depth reading of a clinical nature

Forbes BA, Sahm DF, Weissfeld AS: Chapters 55, 56, 58, 60, 61. Bailey and Scott's Diagnostic Microbiology. 12th edition. Mosby, St. Louis, MO, 2007