Contamination of blood cultures by certain organisms may make it difficult to differentiate between clinical significance and a contaminant.
In general, if a typical contaminant is present in one of several other negative blood cultures, and there are no clinical indications for bacteremia, it is likely a contaminant.
Common skin contaminants include:
- Coagulase negative staphylococci
- Viridans group Streptococci
- Corynebacterium species
- Propioniobacterium species
- Bacillus (non-anthracis) species