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Anaerobic and Aerobic Culture

Test ID: 


CPT code:

87070, 87075


•Anaerobic Culture, Abscess
•Anaerobic Culture, Body Fluid
•Anaerobic Culture, Wound
•Culture, Anaerobic
•Wound Anaerobic Culture

Clinical Use:

Isolate and identify anaerobic pathogenic organisms; determine susceptibility of isolates (extra charge). When actinomycetes are suspected, a specific request must be made

Specimen Type:

Pus, tissue, or other material properly obtained from an abscess, biopsy, aspirate, drainage, exudate, lesion, or wound.

Requested Volume: 

Swab in anaerobic transporter, 0.5 mL pus, or other fluid or tissue from aspirated site in anaerobic transporter

Container Type: 

Anaerobic transport or aerobic/anaerobic bacterial swab transport containing gel medium.

Patient Prep:

Sterile preparation of the aspiration site is imperative.


Some anaerobes will be killed by contact with molecular oxygen for only a few seconds. Overlying and adjacent areas must be carefully disinfected to eliminate contamination with indigenous flora.

Storage Instructions:

Specimens for anaerobic culture should be maintained at room temperature. Under these conditions, aerobes and anaerobes will survive 24 to 72 hours when properly collected in the anaerobic transport tube.

Rejection Criteria

Unlabeled specimen or name discrepancy between specimen and test request label; specimen not received in appropriate anaerobic transport tube; swab not in gel transport medium; ESwab™; swab not stored in oxygen-free atmosphere; specimen refrigerated; specimen received after prolonged delay in transport (usually more than 48 hours

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