Evaluation of a guarded bronchoscopic method for ...

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Title Evaluation of a guarded bronchoscopic method for microbial sampling of the lower airways in foals
Author(s) A. M. Hoffman, L. Viel, C. A. Muckle, D. B. Tesarowski
Journal Canadian Journal of Veterinary Research = Revue Canadienne de Recherche Veterinaire
Date 1991
Volume 55
Issue 4
Start page 325
End page 331
Abstract A novel method to reduce contamination of the bronchoscope during microbial sampling of the lower airways of foals was evaluated. Methylene blue (MB) was used as a nasopharyngeal dye marker to assess the relative contamination from the upper airways of bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) specimens obtained by standard bronchoscopy (SB) and a "guarded" bronchoscopic method (GB). For GB, a clear sterile cellulose sheath was fitted over the bronchoscope in an effort to protect the endoscope tip and channel from contamination. Methylene blue was detected visually in seven of eight BAL samples from foals following SB, but in none of the samples recovered by GB (p less than 0.001). Significantly less MB was detected in BAL by spectrophotometry in the GB group as well (p less than 0.02). The GB was next employed to study the microbial flora in the lower airways of healthy weaned foals (n = 30). Bacteria were isolated from 29 of 30 (97%) BAL samples, and in moderate or large numbers from 26 of 30 (87%) of the foals. Potential pathogens, including Bordetella bronchiseptica, Streptococcus zooepidemicus, Staphylococcus aureus, Mycoplasma felis and Streptococcus pneumoniae, were cultured from the lower airways of foals. In conclusion, the bronchoscope and bronchoalveolar lavage specimens were readily contaminated by a dye marker placed in the nasopharynx of foals, and the degree of contamination was significantly reduced by sheathing the endoscope. This contamination during bronchoscopy may obscure the interpretation of isolates from BAL specimens from foals, which may possess a bacterial flora in the lower airways without cytological evidence of inflammation.
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