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Beaumont Laboratory

Specimen Collection Manual: Blood for Bacterial Culture

Instructions

Grosse Pointe, Royal Oak & Troy:

ADULT: Blue (Aerobic) & Burgandy (Anaerobic) BD Bactec™ Blood Culture Bottle.
PEDIATRIC: Pink (Aerobic) Pediatric Blood Culture Bottle.
VOLUME
REQUIRED:
Adult bottles: 8-10 mL per bottle is optimal.
(EXCEPTION: If less than 3 mL, put all the blood in a Pink Pediatric Bottle.)
Pediatric bottle: 1-3 mL per bottle is optimal (no minimum).
Adult Blue Blood Culture Bottle Adult Lavender Blood Culture Bottle Pediatric Yellow Blood Culture Bottle
                (Blue Collar)            (Lavender Collar)                (Pink Collar)
ADULT BOTTLES:
AEROBIC ANAEROBIC
8-10 mL per bottle is optimal.
(EXCEPTION: If less than 3 mL, put all the blood in a Pink Pediatric Bottle.)
PEDIATRIC BOTTLE:
1-3 mL per bottle is optimal.
(No Minimum)

Farmington Hills: 

ADULT: Blue (Aerobic) & Lavendar (Anaerobic) BacT/ALERT® Blood Culture Bottle.
PEDIATRIC: Yellow (Aerobic) Pediatric Blood Culture Bottle.
VOLUME
REQUIRED:
Adult bottles: 8-10 mL per bottle is optimal.
(EXCEPTION: If less than 3 mL, put all the blood in a Pink Pediatric Bottle.)
Pediatric bottle: 1-3 mL per bottle is optimal (no minimum).
Adult Blue Blood Culture Bottle Adult Lavender Blood Culture Bottle Pediatric Yellow Blood Culture Bottle
                (Blue Collar)            (Lavender Collar)                (Yellow Collar)
ADULT BOTTLES:
AEROBIC ANAEROBIC
8-10 mL per bottle is optimal.
(EXCEPTION: If less than 3 mL, put all the blood in a Yellow Pediatric Bottle.)
PEDIATRIC BOTTLE:
1-3 mL per bottle is optimal.
(No Minimum)
  • A blood culture is one of the most important cultures collected. The purpose of this test is to detect and identify bacteria that might be in a patient's bloodstream.
  • Everyone has microorganisms on the skin. When collecting a blood specimen for culture, special precautions must be taken to avoid contaminating the specimen with skin bacteria.
  • To avoid possible microbial contamination, the venipuncture site must be carefully "scrubbed" with disinfectant prior to performing the phlebotomy. If the blood is contaminated due to poor technique or carelessness, the patient suffers and unnecessary expense is incurred due to prolonged hospitalization and/or unnecessary treatment with antibiotics.
  • Specimen Collection Criteria

    Procedure for Routine Blood Culture VENIPUNCTURE COLLECTION:

    NOTE: Print the labels for the blood culture bottles immediately before starting the blood collection procedure.

    1. Remove plastic caps from tops of bottles.
    2. Vigorously cleanse the rubber septa of the blood culture bottles with 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe and allow to dry. (Do NOT use iodine.)
    3. Thoroughly disinfect venipuncture site by vigorously cleansing for 30 seconds back and forth across the site with a new 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe followed by 2% chlorhexidine antiseptic (ChloraPrep®).
    4. Allow ChloraPrep® to dry completely (at least 30 seconds). Do not wipe the site with guaze. Do not touch the venipuncture site with fingers.
      • NOTE: ChloraPrep® cannot be used on infants less than 2 months old. Scrub the venipuncture site using isopropanol/acetone sepp followed by PVP iodine sepp from center outward in a circular direction. Iodine must dry completely.
    5. Do not wipe the site with gauze. Do not touch the venipuncture site with your fingers. (Do not palpate the vein after skin disinfection unless a sterile glove is worn.)
    6. Collect:
      1. Blood using a butterfly collection system attached to a Vacutainer® holder. Blood is collected directly into a bottle. OR
      2. Blood using a butterfly collection system attached to a syringe. After collection, attach the syringe to a blood transfer device to fill the bottles.
      NOTE: Blood culture bottles should be standing upright to ensure appropriate volume of blood is added.
      1. For adults, 8-10 mL of blood should be transferred into each blood culture bottle.
      2. For pediatric patients, 1-3 mL should be placed into the pediatric blood culture bottle (no minimum).
    7. It is critical to collect adequate blood volumes per bottle.
      • Exception: If less than 3 mL, put all the blood in a pediatric bottle.
    8. Document the exact venipuncture site and exact time of blood collection for each blood culture in the appropriate information system (EPIC or SOFT ID) and on the collection label.
    9. Send bottles to Microbiology immediately.

    Processing

    • Blood Culture bottles should be transported to the Microbiology Laboratory immediately after collection.
    • If bottles are being sent through the pneumatic tube system, it is imperative that no more than 2 bottles (1 set) be inserted into one carrier. Only Pediatric glass bottles must be placed into plastic cones (one bottle per cone). Each cone must be placed in a biohazard bag. Two bottles in cones can be placed in one pneumatic tube - "bottom-to-bottom." Additionally, a foam insert must be added to the pneumatic tube to prevent breakage.
    • Make sure specimen collection label is positioned VERTICAL (PARALLEL) to the bottle length without covering the manufacturer's barcode label or numerical identification. (See photo below.)
    • Do NOT refrigerate inoculated Blood Culture bottles. Bottles may be held at room temperature for short periods of time. Store uninoculated bottles at room temperature.
    • Protect from direct sunlight.
    • Do NOT use bottles beyond the expiration date printed on each bottle.

    Reference

    1. BD Bactec™ Procedure Manual, Becton-Dickinson.
    2. Procedure Manual, DuPont Isolator System.
    3. Clinical Microbiology Procedure Handbook, ASM Press, 2016.
    4. ChloraPrep® product literature.

    Last Updated

    07/27/2017

    Microtainer® and Vacutainer® are registered trademarks of Becton, Dickinson and Company.
    UroVysion® is a registered trademark of Abbott Laboratories. ThinPrep® is a registered trademark of Hologic, Incorporated.

    This directory currently reflects information only for specimens collected and/or processed at the Farmington Hills, Grosse Pointe, Royal Oak, and Troy campuses.