This is why our catch is special
Species: Aeroroccus urinae
Phenotype: Gram-positive coccus in tetrads (groups of 4)
Why is it special:
Can be difficult to culture, and is often mistaken for skin microbiota contamination, as it looks very similar to common skin bacteria (streptococci)when cultured on blood agar.
Spondylodiscitis is an infection of the intervertebral disc, usually seeded from the bloodstream. It may spread to the bone and cause a local abscess. Our sample came from such an abscess.
Aerococcus urinae is a very rare causative agent of spondylodiscitis, but its incidence is increasing. It can commonly cause urinary tract infections, especially in elderly men, and from there infect other parts of the body via the bloodstream.
Impact on the patient:
When incorrectly treated, spondylodiscitis can be fatal. By finding the causative agent, the patient can now be treated with narrow-spectrum oral antibiotics and has a high chance of recovery.