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UI researchers find method that could cut staph diagnosis from 2 days to 3 hours

June 24, 2016

Half a million people are infected with staph bacteria each year, leading to skin infections, as well as more dangerous and deadly diseases, especially when the infection enters the bloodstream.

But diagnosing Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia (SAB) in the blood can take days—doctors draw a blood sample for testing, and results aren’t generally available for 24 to 48 hours. While waiting, a patient is placed on antibiotics to treat an infection that may or may not exist—and if it does, more testing and waiting follows to determine if the antibiotic treatment is working.

Theoretically, a patient could be on an antibiotic for three days before learning it isn’t effective and having to be prescribed something different.

Now, UI researchers have identified a procedure that may reduce the wait for diagnosing a staph infection from a few days to just three hours, as well as the amount of time patients may have to wait to determine their medicine’s efficacy.

Read the complete article.