Low utility of pediatric isolator blood culture system for detection of fungemia in children: A 10-year review

Aaron Campigotto, Susan E. Richardson, Michael Sebert, Erin Mc Elvania TeKippe, Aparna Chakravarty, Christopher D. Doern

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The use of the Wampole Isolator 1.5-ml pediatric blood culture tube for the detection of fungemia in children was assessed by a 10-year retrospective review at two pediatric hospitals, The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Canada, and the Children's Medical Center of Dallas, Texas. Over this period, a total of 9,442 pediatric Isolator specimens were processed, with yeast or yeast-like organisms recovered in 297 (3.1%) of the specimens (151 [1.6%] unique clinical episodes) and filamentous or dimorphic fungi recovered in 31 (0.3%) of the specimens (25 unique clinical episodes). Only 18 of the 151 clinical episodes of fungemia attributable to yeast were not detected by automated blood culture systems. The majority of isolated yeast were Candida spp., which were usually detected by automated systems, whereas the most common non-Candida yeast was Malassezia furfur, which the automated system failed to detect. Filamentous or dimorphic fungi were detected in 25 episodes, of which only 9 (36%) episodes were deemed clinically significant after chart review, indicating that in the majority of cases (16/25, 64%) fungal isolation represented contamination. In five of the nine clinically significant episodes, the isolated fungus (Histoplasma capsulatum, Coccidioides immitis/posadasii, Fusarium oxysporum, Aspergillus spp., and Bipolaris spp.) was also identified in other clinical specimens. Over the 10-year study period, the use of the pediatric Isolator system, at the discretion of the treating physician, only rarely provided useful clinical information for the diagnosis of fungemia in children, with the exception of M. furfur and possibly endemic mycoses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2284-2287
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of clinical microbiology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)


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