Diagnostic evaluation of a point-of-care test for culture and microbial susceptibility testing in canine dermatological infections in clinical practice.Vet World. 2020 Mar; 13(3):521-529.VW
Background and Aim
Empirical antimicrobial therapy is frequently given in superficial bacterial folliculitis (SBF) and otitis externa (OE) in dogs, especially for the initial clinical presentation. Culture and subsequent antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) are generally limited to chronic cases with poor response to initial therapy. Several factors contribute to the failure to implement the use of AST in veterinary practice, i.e., long laboratory turnaround time or special requirements for sample shipping. Point-of-care (PoC) testing might reduce laboratory turnaround time and costs and the risk of emergence of multidrug-resistant pathogens. This study evaluated the Speed Biogram™ PoC test in canine SBF and OE compared with conventional methods for culture and AST.
Materials and Methods
Thirty-four canine samples were analyzed: eleven from SBF, seven from bacterial OE, four from mixed OE, six from Malassezia spp. OE, and six negative controls. Sensitivity (Se) and specificity (Sp) of the PoC test and the agreement between the PoC test and conventional methods were evaluated.
Se and Sp of PoC test in discriminating between healthy and unhealthy subjects were 100% (95% confidence interval [CI] 87.66-100.00) and 100% (95% CI 54.1-100.0), respectively. For bacterial identification, the k value was 0.532. Se and Sp of PoC tests for AST were 81.73% (95% CI 72.95-88.63) and 93.10% (95% CI 88.86-96.98), respectively with a total good agreement between tests (mean k=0.714), but major (8/27) and very major (19/27) errors were observed in 55% of bacterial conventional culture-positive samples.
PoC test can identify dogs with SBF and OE, but AST is not sufficiently accurate. The lack of susceptibility testing for methicillin makes this test inappropriate for use in small animal practice.