Comparison of the BacT/Alert FAN aerobic and the difco ESP 80A aerobic bottles for pediatric blood cultures

P. L. Welby-Sellenriek, D. S. Keller, R. J. Ferrett, G. A. Storch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

We compared the BacT/Alert system using the aerobic FAN bottle with the ESP system using the 80A aerobic bottle for the detection of pediatric bloodstream pathogens at a children's hospital. From 6,636 blood culture sets complying with the inclusion criteria, 308 pathogens were detected, including 177 that were detected by both systems, 69 that were detected by BacT/Alert FAN only, and 62 that were detected by ESP 80A only (P = 0.6; not significant). BacT/Alert FAN detected more isolates of Staphylococcus aureus (47 versus 34; P = 0.02), while ESP 80A detected more episodes of streptococcal and enterococcal infection. BacT/Alert FAN detected more pathogens from patients receiving antibiotic therapy (107 versus 93; P = 0.04). Of 248 separate episodes of bacteremia or fungemia, 146 were detected by both systems, 56 were detected by ESP 80A only, and 46 were detected by BacT/Alert FAN only (P = 0.37; not significant). The median times to detection were 13.6 h for ESP 80A and 15.7 h for BacT/Alert FAN (P < 0.001). Both systems were considered easy to operate and were free from significant mechanical difficulties. False-positive or false-negative signals were rare or nonexistent with both systems. We conclude that both systems rapidly detect a broad range of pediatric bloodstream pathogens. BacT/Alert FAN provides better detection of Staphylococcus aureus, especially from patients receiving antibiotics. ESP 80A provides better detection of streptococci and enterococci.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1166-1171
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of clinical microbiology
Volume35
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 1997

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