We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. This includes personalizing content and advertising. To learn more, click here. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies. Cookie Policy.

Features Partner Sites Information LinkXpress
Sign In
Advertise with Us
LGC Clinical Diagnostics

Download Mobile App

Placental Swabs Found Most Effective for Detection of Maternal Sepsis

By LabMedica International staff writers
Posted on 01 Jan 2024
Print article
Image: New research has revealed ‘best approach’ for detection of maternal sepsis (Photo courtesy of 123RF)
Image: New research has revealed ‘best approach’ for detection of maternal sepsis (Photo courtesy of 123RF)

Over half of maternal deaths occurring in hospitals are attributed to sepsis, a critical condition where an infection spreads beyond local tissue containment, leading to organ failure. Maternal or perinatal sepsis is a significant health concern globally, affecting more than 20 million women and resulting in approximately 17,000 deaths each year. Identifying the infectious agents responsible for these cases is often a complex task. While blood cultures are the preferred diagnostic method, they frequently yield low positive results. Other specimens like vaginal swabs have limited clinical usefulness, and obtaining microbiological cultures from the uterine cavity for antimicrobial guidance is typically challenging. Now, a new study of microbiology specimens used to investigate maternal sepsis has demonstrated that placental swabs could play a vital role in informing antimicrobial therapy decisions.

The study performed by researchers from the University of Limerick (Limerick, Ireland) involved the analysis of nearly 2,000 specimens collected over five and a half years. The team retrospectively assessed the bacterial culture results from various specimens collected as part of a 'septic screen' designed to identify bacteria causing maternal infections leading to sepsis. The specimens included blood, urine, throat swabs, vaginal swabs, and placental swabs. By examining and comparing the results from these specimens for 430 women, the study found that placental swabs were the most effective in detecting the highest number of pathogens.

The study's findings indicate that placental swabs are valuable in identifying potential pathogens from the uterine cavity, which is the most common site of perinatal infections. This discovery is crucial as placental swabs are not routinely examined in many hospitals, meaning vital information that could influence the treatment of these infections might be overlooked. Currently, international guidelines for diagnosing maternal infections are inconsistent, and there is scant information in existing scientific literature about the utilization of placental swabs.

“Maternal sepsis may occur during pregnancy or when a C-section incision, tear or other wound from childbirth becomes infected in the days or weeks after giving birth,” explained Professor Colum Dunne who led the unique new study. “This study provides new information on how sepsis can be detected, and the organisms involved identified early, so that the best approach to successful treatment can be selected.”

Related Links:
University of Limerick

Platinum Member
COVID-19 Rapid Test
OSOM COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test
One Step HbA1c Measuring System
POCT Fluorescent Immunoassay Analyzer
Gold Member
Systemic Autoimmune Testing Assay
BioPlex 2200 ANA Screen with MDSS

Print article


Molecular Diagnostics

view channel
Image: Prostate cancer cell image taken using a scanning electron microscope (Photo courtesy of LRI EM Unit)

New Discoveries of Prostate Cancer Evolution Pave Way for Genetic Test

Prostate cancer ranks as one of the most common cancers affecting men, and while it accounts for a significant number of male cancer fatalities, many men live with it rather than die from it.... Read more


view channel
Image: The Gazelle Hb Variant Test (Photo courtesy of Hemex Health)

First Affordable and Rapid Test for Beta Thalassemia Demonstrates 99% Diagnostic Accuracy

Hemoglobin disorders rank as some of the most prevalent monogenic diseases globally. Among various hemoglobin disorders, beta thalassemia, a hereditary blood disorder, affects about 1.5% of the world's... Read more


view channel
Image: The photoacoustic spectral response sensing instrument is based on low-cost laser diodes (Photo courtesy of Khan et al., doi 10.1117/1.JBO.29.1.017002)

Compact Photoacoustic Sensing Instrument Enhances Biomedical Tissue Diagnosis

The pursuit of precise and efficient diagnostic methods is a top priority in the constantly evolving field of biomedical sciences. A promising development in this area is the photoacoustic (PA) technique.... Read more


view channel
Image: The companies will develop genetic testing systems based on capillary electrophoresis sequencers (Photo courtesy of 123RF)

Sysmex and Hitachi Collaborate on Development of New Genetic Testing Systems

Sysmex Corporation (Kobe, Japan) and Hitachi High-Tech Corporation (Tokyo, Japan) have entered into a collaboration for the development of genetic testing systems using capillary electrophoresis sequencers... Read more
Copyright © 2000-2024 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.