Pathology Handbook

Mycobacteria

Synonyms

AFB, TB

Clinical Indications

Suspected TB or mycobacteria infection

Test Includes

Microscopy for acid fast bacilli
Culture for Mycobacteria

Request Form 

Request via ICE

Availability

On request during routine working hours

Specific Criteria

Please give detailed clinical information, including date of onset/contact with the suspected infection, and any current, or intended, antibiotic therapy

Turnaround Time

Microscopy - Next routine working day
Culture - up to six weeks for a negative report
Positive cultures are sent to Reference Laboratory (Barts & the London Queen Mary School of Medicine & Dentistry) for ID and antibiotic susceptibility testing

Specimen

Dependent on site of suspected infection:

Sputum - White capped universal
Pleural Fluid - White capped universal
Urine - Three early morning urine samples taken on separate days, in white or red capped universals
Other Fluids or Pus - White capped universal

Container

Fluids or pus:

Urine bottle white top 

Urine:

Urine bottle micro red top

Collection

Sample should be transported to Microbiology as soon as possible

Causes for Rejection

Unlabelled / inadequately labelled sample  

Lab Handling

Process as soon as possible