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Diagnosis of an Infected Patient

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Diagnosis of an Infected Patient

Infection is the invasion and growth of microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are not normally present within the body. A prokaryotic cell is a simple cell that does not have a nucleus. One of the most common types of prokaryotic cells is a bacterium. Bacteria are differentiated by many factors including shape, chemical composition, nutritional requirements, biochemical activities, and sources of energy (Tortora 76). A patient with an infection in the upper respiratory system will need to have a sputum sample sent to the lab for further evaluation to determine the cause in order to accurately treat the infection. While many microorganisms can be the cause of infection, this essay will focus on the following genera: Bacillus, Escherichia, and Mycoplasma as the cause of the patient’s infection.
Bacillus is a rod-shaped, endospore-forming, facultatively anaerobic and gram-positive bacterium (Tortora G2). The gram stain is fundamental to identify the characteristics of bacteria as this process differentiates organisms according to the cell wall structure. Gram-positive cells have a thick cell wall layer and will stain blue to purple. The Gram stain process requires four steps which include applying a primary stain, usually crystal violet, to a heat-fixed smear, then adding a mordant, usually Iodine, followed by rapid decolorization with alcohol or acetone and finally counterstaining with safranin (Hussey). At the completion of the Gram stain the gram-positive cell is purple. Gram-stained bacteria should be viewed with a brightfield microscope at 1000X magnification with oil immersion. If the smear of cells is crowded, it will be difficult to note cell shape and arrangement. (Hussey). In Gram stains of body fluids, Bacillus appears straight or slightly curved with square ends arranged either...

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