The Usefulness of Surveillance Cultures: a Prospective Cohort Study on the ICU

  • H. K. F. van Saene
  • N. Taylor
  • N. Reilly
  • J. Hughes
  • K. R. Shankar
  • P. Baines
  • R. Sarginson
Conference paper
Part of the Topics in Anaesthesia and Critical Care book series (TIACC)


Surveillance samples are defined as samples obtained from body sites where potentially pathogenic micro-organisms (PPM) are carried, i.e., the digestive tract comprising the oropharyngeal cavity and rectum [1]. Surveillance swabs are to be distinguished from surface and diagnostic samples. Surface samples are swabs from the skin such as axilla, groin and umbilicus, and from the nose, eye and ear. They do not belong to a surveillance sampling protocol, because positive surface swabs merely reflect oropharyngeal and rectal carrier state. Diagnostic samples are samples from internal organs that are normally sterile, such as lower airways, blood, bladder, and skin lesions. They are only taken on clinical indication. The endpoint of diagnostic samples is clinical, as they aim to microbiologically prove a clinical diagnosis of inflammation, both generalized and/or local.


Pediatric Intensive Care Unit Surveillance Culture Selective Decontamination Endogenous Infection Abnormal Flora 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia, Milano 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. K. F. van Saene
  • N. Taylor
  • N. Reilly
  • J. Hughes
  • K. R. Shankar
  • P. Baines
  • R. Sarginson

There are no affiliations available

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