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Article |

Bacteremia After Liver Biopsy

Richard V. McCloskey, MD; Michael Gold, MD; Elliot Weser, MD
Arch Intern Med. 1973;132(2):213-215. doi:10.1001/archinte.1973.03650080057011.
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Bacteremia occurred during the six-hour period following consecutive liver biopsies. Blood was obtained immediately prior to, 15 minutes after, and two, four, and six hours after biopsy. A multiple culture system using liquid and solid media under aerobic and anaerobic conditions was used.

Observed incidence of bacteremia was 5.8% (4 of 69). Corrected incidence of asymptomatic gram-negative bacteremia was 2.9% (2 of 69). All liver biopsy cultures from bacteremic patients were sterile. We recommend obtaining blood cultures before liver biopsy if there is a history compatible with biliary or gastrointestinal tract infection. Shock, confusion, fever, or hypothermia occurring after liver biopsy may represent bacteremia rather than hemorrhage or sterile biliary peritonitis.


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