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Article
March 8, 1941

METHOD FOR OBTAINING RAPID BACTERIAL GROWTH IN CULTURES FROM PATIENTS UNDER TREATMENT WITH SULFONAMIDES

Author Affiliations

Associate in Medicine, Peter Bent Brigham Hospital; Instructor in Medicine and Bacteriology and Immunology, Harvard Medical School; Boston
From the Medical Clinic of the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital and the Departments of Medicine and Bacteriology and Immunology, Harvard Medical School.

JAMA. 1941;116(10):941-942. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.62820100001008
Abstract

Since the introduction of the sulfonamide drugs for the therapy of bacterial infections, it has often been difficult to obtain positive cultures from patients under treatment. In most cases this is because the bacteria have actually disappeared from the lesion or the blood stream. In other cases, however, when the patient is obviously ill and not responding satisfactorily to treatment, cultures may grow out slowly if at all. Occasionally a patient is seen at home by a physician without facilities for taking cultures, who makes the diagnosis and puts the patient on chemotherapy. If the response is unsatisfactory, the patient is sent to the hospital, where, because of the presence of sulfonamide in the body fluids, it becomes exceedingly difficult to make an accurate bacteriologic diagnosis and hence to institute proper therapy.

We have encountered several such cases recently. One patient with purulent meningitis had been heavily treated with sulfanilamide

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