Test Overview

Test Methodology

Bactec Blood Culture, AFB

Test Usage

Effective method for isolating atypical mycobacteria from blood in acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

Reference Range*

No growth of mycobacteria

* Reference ranges may change over time. Please refer to the original patient report when evaluating results.

Test Details

Days Test Performed


Analytic Time

Preliminary results are reported in 24 hours. The health care provider will be notified of positive cultures. Negative cultures are reported after 6 weeks.

Soft Order Code


MiChart Code

AFB Culture, Blood



Blood Culture, AFB
AFB, M. avium-intracellulare Blood Culture
Blood Culture, M. avium-intracellulare
Culture, Blood, AFB
M. avium-intracellulare Blood Culture
Mycobacteria Culture, Blood
Quantitative Blood Culture
TB Culture, Blood
Acid Fast Bacilli Culture, Blood

+ See More



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Specimen Requirements

Offsite Collection Instructions

Swab skin over the site of venipuncture with iodoform solution for 1 minute in a 2 inch circular area around vein to be used, using vigorous strokes and working from the center to the periphery. Allow to dry 2 minutes before performing venipuncture. If use of 2% iodine preparation is contraindicated in patients sensitive to iodine, alcohol alone may be used. DO NOT palpitate venipuncture site after preparation. Draw blood into Isolator Tube. Do not refrigerate or incubate. For optimum recovery, send directly to the laboratory. Label tube with patients name, registration number, and culture number or anatomic site if more than one culture is drawn at one time. Indicate specimen source, collection date/time, current antibiotic or antifungal therapy, and clinical diagnosis. If unacceptable specimen is received, the client will be notified before disposal of the original specimen.


Isolator Tube
Pediatric Isolater Tube

Normal Volume

10.0 mL in Isolator Tube

Minimum Volume

7.0 mL in Isolator Tube

Additional Information

Test includes blood culture for isolation and identification, particularly M. avium-intracellulare. Test includes susceptibility testing of potentially pathogenic organism(s) at an additional charge unless specifically declined. Susceptibilities are performed on the first organism isolated from a patient and at 2-6 month intervals if that organism continues to be isolated while the patient is on therapy. M. tuberculosis susceptibility testing is sent to the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services (MDHHS); although there is no charge for testing, MLabs charges a handling fee for processing and forwarding specimens to MDHHS. Non-tuberculosis susceptibility testing is sent to Mayo Medical Laboratories. A subculture of the isolate is kept by the Microbiology Laboratory for further testing, if necessary. By ordering this test, the clinician acknowledges that additional reflex testing will be performed and billed a separate additional charge if indicated.

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