Sputum culture and MIC Panel showing different results

Posted by Jen_b @jenblalock, Apr 16 8:06am

Hi all. I haven't been on here for a couple of years. My MAC cleared up and I've been off meds since 2017. My latest sputum culture showed it is back and I am on the Big 3 only 3 x a week this time which is so much less than what I went through last time. My question is this: Has anyone had a culture sent to the lab for susceptibility and had it come back showing another strain of NTM? After having my cultures come back positive for Avium Intracellulare, my first susceptibility (or MIC panel) results came back with "Test not performed. We are unable to isolate the Mycobacterium avium complex due to overgrowth of the Mycobacterium chelonae-abscessus group." This result was from Quest laboratories and my ID doctor is also sending it off to NJH for further analysis. Mainly, I just want to know if anyone else has gotten this sort of result from their susceptibility report after having a different bacteria reported from the sputum culture. Thanks for your time.

Yes, I had something similar. I had 4 different sputum cultures report abscessus and when my dr asked the lab do susceptibility testing to see if it had the erm gene they realized I didn't have abscessus but that it was Mycobacterium avian complex instead. A few months later I went to NJ and the sputum cultures have all showed Mycobacterium Intracellular. Its really important to use a good lab.

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Yes, our labs all in MN all use NJH for susceptibility testing because of previous issues with crazy results.
At various times, my cultures grew at least 5 different strains of NTM, but all showed susceptibility to at least one of the big-3. I stopped medications 16 months ago due to intolerance of side effects, even though my cultures were still positive for 2 strains. Now I rely on 7% saline nebs and clearance measures to keep the infections at bay – so far so good.
Sue

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@sueinmn

Yes, our labs all in MN all use NJH for susceptibility testing because of previous issues with crazy results.
At various times, my cultures grew at least 5 different strains of NTM, but all showed susceptibility to at least one of the big-3. I stopped medications 16 months ago due to intolerance of side effects, even though my cultures were still positive for 2 strains. Now I rely on 7% saline nebs and clearance measures to keep the infections at bay – so far so good.
Sue

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@sueinmn Blessings, Sue, May the change in treatment work well for you. Elzabeth

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@sueinmn

Yes, our labs all in MN all use NJH for susceptibility testing because of previous issues with crazy results.
At various times, my cultures grew at least 5 different strains of NTM, but all showed susceptibility to at least one of the big-3. I stopped medications 16 months ago due to intolerance of side effects, even though my cultures were still positive for 2 strains. Now I rely on 7% saline nebs and clearance measures to keep the infections at bay – so far so good.
Sue

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Sue, just curious do you know how many colonies you had when you quit? or how many you have now? I was diagnosed a little over a year ago and I have not had treatment. I too am hoping the 7% saline and clearance measures keep the bacteria at bay.

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@sueinmn

Yes, our labs all in MN all use NJH for susceptibility testing because of previous issues with crazy results.
At various times, my cultures grew at least 5 different strains of NTM, but all showed susceptibility to at least one of the big-3. I stopped medications 16 months ago due to intolerance of side effects, even though my cultures were still positive for 2 strains. Now I rely on 7% saline nebs and clearance measures to keep the infections at bay – so far so good.
Sue

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I am no longer receiving my emails from this forum. I have checked the site and my email is correct, it shows I am following, I have checked my spam but can find nothing. Any suggestions from anyone. I was able to get to this area in order to ask this question. Any suggestions? Help!

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@gej53

I am no longer receiving my emails from this forum. I have checked the site and my email is correct, it shows I am following, I have checked my spam but can find nothing. Any suggestions from anyone. I was able to get to this area in order to ask this question. Any suggestions? Help!

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@gej53 Try posting this as a separate, individual post. You posted in response to my post and no one will see it.

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@sueinmn

Yes, our labs all in MN all use NJH for susceptibility testing because of previous issues with crazy results.
At various times, my cultures grew at least 5 different strains of NTM, but all showed susceptibility to at least one of the big-3. I stopped medications 16 months ago due to intolerance of side effects, even though my cultures were still positive for 2 strains. Now I rely on 7% saline nebs and clearance measures to keep the infections at bay – so far so good.
Sue

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@sueinmn would you be so kind as to tell me what your “clearance measures” are? Thanks

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@glendamoseley1

@sueinmn would you be so kind as to tell me what your “clearance measures” are? Thanks

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I use an Aerobika, then after 4-5 breaths with the pulsation from it I stop and huff cough a couple of times. I repeat this 2-3 times once a day when asymptomatic, twice if having a lot of mucus. Also, sometimes I neb with levalbuterol if my asthma is flaring.
Sue

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@pop55

Sue, just curious do you know how many colonies you had when you quit? or how many you have now? I was diagnosed a little over a year ago and I have not had treatment. I too am hoping the 7% saline and clearance measures keep the bacteria at bay.

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I really have no idea how many I had, because we made the decision based on CT results and worsening side effects, so I was only told "still positive" with no quantities or sensitivity testing. Because I was asymptomatic with normal (for me) lung sounds and O2 sats in December, we made the decision to hold off testing and another CT until either symptoms return or Dec 2021, whichever is sooner. Still no symptoms, so I'm hoping no growth.
Sue

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@jenblalock

@gej53 Try posting this as a separate, individual post. You posted in response to my post and no one will see it.

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Thanks, will try that. Am missing my information:)

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@gej53

I am no longer receiving my emails from this forum. I have checked the site and my email is correct, it shows I am following, I have checked my spam but can find nothing. Any suggestions from anyone. I was able to get to this area in order to ask this question. Any suggestions? Help!

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@sueinmn I am the same, I just get the overall view weekly not each message like I used to.

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Hi Jen I know that Kathryn, who started this group, had a few different types when her MAC returned, it does happen, she was frequenting hospital where her husband was and probably got some from there as the type of bugs she had frequented hospitals. My MAI also has returned, the big 3 hasn't worked so will be going on something different soon. Take care Heather

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