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Gurjeet Singh, Raksha, R.K. Mukhia, A.D. Urhekar


Background: Laboratory surfaces harbor many microbial pathogens
as the patient samples are kept on laboratory surfaces during
processing. The aim of the study was to find out bacterial and fungal
pathogens on laboratory surfaces of various sections of Microbiology
laboratory – Bacteriology, Mycology, Serology, media preparation and
discard section. This study will help design methods to help in
prevention of laboratory acquired infection among laboratory workers
and others who transport the samples from patients to laboratory and
also collect the reports. Material and Methods: This prospective
study was conducted in a microbiology laboratory of Mahatma Gandhi
Hospital, Navi Mumbai, India. The period of study was 6 months from
November 2013 to April 2014. Samples were collected from - various
surfaces of microbiology laboratory with moistened (pre-moistened with sterile peptone
water) two cotton swabs. One swab was inoculated onto MacConkey agar, Blood agar, and
Chocolate agar media and incubated at 37ºC for 24 to 48 hours and other inoculated on
Sabouraud’s dextrose agar media and incubated for 1 to 7 days at 25-28°C. Results: We
isolated and identified various bacteria and fungi from these surfaces. In our study, the
distribution of microorganisms on laboratory surfaces were Bacillus species 36.36% followed
by Coagulase negative Staphylococcus 14.29% Staphylococcus aureus 12.99%, Diptheroids
10.39%, Micrococcus 9.09%, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsiella species 6.49% each,
Aspergillus species 2.60% and Candida species 1 1.30% were isolated. Conclusions: Our
study showed that all areas of the laboratory are contaminated with pathogenic / non
pathogenic bacteria and fungi. It indicates that these are a potential source of transmission of infection from the hands of laboratory workers to themselves / others if proper precaution is not taken.

Keywords: Laboratory-acquired infection, bacteria, fungi, disinfectants and health care workers.

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