Molecular testing for Klebsiella pneumoniae is used for laboratory confirmation of infections by this particular microbe.
Klebsiella pneumoniae is a rod-shaped, non-motile, Gram-negative bacterium belonging to the family Enterobacteriaceae. The bacterium is about 2 µm by 0.5 µm in size and comprises a dense 160 nm polysaccharide capsule known as K antigen which together with lipopolysaccharide (O antigen) contributes to the pathogenicity of Klebsiella pneumoniae. The Klebsiella genome is approximately 5 Mbp (million base pairs) in length and is arranged on a circular chromosome.
Klebsiella pneumoniae is found in the human gastrointestinal tract as part of normal flora (intestinal microbiome). The polysaccharide capsule protects the bacterium against phagocytosis by the host polymorphonuclear cells and provides protection against the host's serum bactericidal activity. The polysaccharide capsule also contains molecules that mediate the binding of the microbe to the host cells. People with reduced respiratory defense are susceptible to Klebsiella pneumonia lung infection which can lead to inflammation, necrosis, and bleeding of the lung tissue. Klebsiella pneumoniae can cause nosocomial infections, such as pneumonia, bacteremia, and meningitis.
Klebsiella can lead to a wide range of pathological conditions, including pneumonia, urinary tract infections, septicemia, meningitis, diarrhea, and soft tissue infections. Some Klebsiella species have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of ankylosing spondylitis and other spondyloarthropathies. Klebsiella infections are more common in very young, very old, and in patients with other underlying diseases, such as cancer.
Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. The correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".
Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings, and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.
At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.