• We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Logo of jcmPermissionsJournals.ASM.orgJournalJCM ArticleJournal InfoAuthorsReviewers
J Clin Microbiol. Oct 1992; 30(10): 2743–2745.
PMCID: PMC270513

Time to detection of positive BacT/Alert blood cultures and lack of need for routine subculture of 5- to 7-day negative cultures.


Consecutive BacT/Alert blood cultures which were instrument negative following a 7-day incubation were subcultured. Eighteen (0.2%) of 11,476 bottles had growth on subculture. Eleven of these eighteen isolates were considered contaminants on the basis of the identity of the organism and lack of other positive blood cultures from the same patient. In addition, analysis of time to instrument detection for approximately 2,900 positive blood cultures indicates that 5 or 6 days of incubation is sufficient for the routine detection of clinically significant organisms from BacT/Alert blood cultures. These data indicate that subculture of 5- to 7-day instrument-negative BacT/Alert blood culture bottles is not necessary.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (560K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Araj GF, Hopfer RL, Wenglar M, Fainstein V. Valuable of terminal subcultures from negative BACTEC blood culture bottles. J Clin Microbiol. 1981 Nov;14(5):589–590. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Beckwith DG, Etowski DC. Evaluation of the necessity for routine terminal subculturing of blood cultures negative by radiometric methods. J Clin Microbiol. 1982 Jan;15(1):35–40. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Campbell J, Washington JA., 2nd Evaluation of the necessity for routine terminal subcultures of previously negative blood cultures. J Clin Microbiol. 1980 Oct;12(4):576–578. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Gill VJ. Lack of clinical relevance in routine terminal subculturing of blood cultures. J Clin Microbiol. 1981 Jul;14(1):116–118. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • McLaughlin JC, Evers JL, Officer JL. Lack of requirement for blind subcultures of BACTEC blood culture media. J Clin Microbiol. 1981 Nov;14(5):567–570. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Murray PR, Sondag JE. Evaluation of routine subcultures of macroscopically negative blood cultures for detection of anaerobes. J Clin Microbiol. 1978 Oct;8(4):427–430. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Plorde JJ, Carlson LG, Dau ME. Lack of clinical relevance in routine final subcultures of radiometrically negative BACTEC blood culture vials. Am J Clin Pathol. 1982 Nov;78(5):753–755. [PubMed]
  • Strand CL. Routine subcultures shown to be unnecessary in radiometric detection of bacteremia using three media. Am J Clin Pathol. 1982 Mar;77(3):328–332. [PubMed]
  • Thorpe TC, Wilson ML, Turner JE, DiGuiseppi JL, Willert M, Mirrett S, Reller LB. BacT/Alert: an automated colorimetric microbial detection system. J Clin Microbiol. 1990 Jul;28(7):1608–1612. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Weinstein MP, Reller LB, Murphy JR, Lichtenstein KA. The clinical significance of positive blood cultures: a comprehensive analysis of 500 episodes of bacteremia and fungemia in adults. I. Laboratory and epidemiologic observations. Rev Infect Dis. 1983 Jan-Feb;5(1):35–53. [PubMed]
  • Wilson ML, Weinstein MP, Reimer LG, Mirrett S, Reller LB. Controlled comparison of the BacT/Alert and BACTEC 660/730 nonradiometric blood culture systems. J Clin Microbiol. 1992 Feb;30(2):323–329. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of Clinical Microbiology are provided here courtesy of American Society for Microbiology (ASM)


Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...


  • MedGen
    Related information in MedGen
  • PubMed
    PubMed citations for these articles

Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...