Endometrium: bacteriology

Bacterial culture of the reproductive tract

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  • Endometrium: endometritis acute - histologyFig.1 Endometrium: endometritis acute - histology
    Culture of the endometrium is helpful in identifying bacterial causes of acute endometritis   (Fig. 1)  and selecting appropriate antibiotic therapy.


In combination

  • With endometrial cytology or endometrial biopsy    .

Result data

Abnormal values

  • Bacteria isolated can be divided into:


Non-venereal producers

  • Potential acute endometritis producers - many normal mares will not succumb to endometritis    when challenged with these organisms.
  • The most commonly isolated organisms in cases of acute endometritis are:
    • Streptococcus equi (subspecies) zooepidemicus    .
    • E. coli    .
    • Pseudomonas spp.
    • Klebsiella spp    .
    • Enterobacter aerogenes    .
    • Possibly anaerobes such as Bacteroides spp and others - significance is unknown.
  • Contaminant organisms:
  • These organisms are rarely incriminated causes of acute endometritis.

Errors and Artifacts

  • Many false positive results occur with unguarded swab technique, and diagnosis is made much more accurate if a concurrent smear (cytology) is taken             . (Figs. 2-5)
  • It is impossible to obtain representative swabs using unguarded instruments.
  • Even with guarded instruments, contaminants are frequently picked up; that is why diagnosis of endometritis based only on culture is not possible.
  • The presence of PMNs indicates acute inflammation, and thus adds weight to the significance of the bacterial isolates.
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