The lack of selectivity of chocolated blood agar (CBA), routinely used for the isolation of , may lead to masking of the growth of due to overgrowth of competing flora. Bacitracin can be used as a selective agent, either incorporated into the medium or applied to the medium in a filter paper. However, neither method has been evaluated or compared in a large study. Sputum samples (1990) were examined in four laboratories and the isolation rates of on chocolated blood agar with bacitracin added to the medium (BCA) and chocolated blood agar (CBA) with a bacitracin disk were compared. A plain blood agar plate was also inoculated to facilitate the isolation of so that its effects on the isolation of could be assessed. No significant difference was found between the isolation rates of on BCA and CBA with a bacitracin disk, although competing flora was greatly reduced and quantity of growth of increased on BCA. The presence of did not affect the isolation of in this study.


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