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BackgroundBlood culture collection practice in low-resource settings where routine blood culture collection is available has not been previously described.MethodologyWe conducted a secondary descriptive analysis of children aged 2-23 months enrolled in the Malawi Childhood Acute Illness and Nutrition (CHAIN) study, stratified by whether an admission blood culture had been undertaken and by nutritional status. Chi-square test was used to compare the differences between groups.ResultsA total of 347 children were included, of whom 161 (46%) had a blood culture collected. Children who had a blood culture collected, compared to those who did not, were more likely to present with sepsis (43% vs. 20%, p ConclusionBlood culture collection was more frequent in children with sepsis and gastroenteritis, but was not associated with mortality. In low-resource settings, developing criteria for blood culture based on risk factors rather than clinician judgement may better utilize the existing resources.

Original publication





Journal of tropical pediatrics

Publication Date





Paediatrics and Child Health Research Group, , Malawi-Liverpool Wellcome Research Programme P.O. Box 30096, Chichiri, Blantyre, Malawi.


Humans, Sepsis, Gastroenteritis, Acute Disease, Child, Malawi, Tertiary Care Centers, Blood Culture