Wound infection

Last updated: Saturday, 14, August, 2010
Frequent Pathogens Appropriate Tests

Minor wound infections may just require local drainage (eg, removal of surgical suture) and do not require microbiological testing.

Wound swab or pus - microscopy and culture for moderate or severe infection, especially when there is spreading cellulitis or symptoms and signs of systemic infection.

Aspiration of pus is preferable to a swab of pus or wound.

If aspiration or swab of pus, or wound swab, is not possible, injection of 0.5-1.0 mL of saline followed by aspiration may provide a suitable specimen (eg, from areas of cellulitis).

Trauma, including surgery
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Streptococcus pyogenes
  • Bacteroides fragilis

With soil, faecal contamination

  • Clostridium perfringens

With water contamination

  • Aeromonas hydrophila
  • Vibrio spp

With fish-handling

  • Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae

With dog or cat bite

  • Pasteurella multocida
  • Capnocytophaga canimorsus (dogs)

With human bite

  • Eikenella corrodens