Intended for healthcare professionals

Research Article

Microbiology of pyogenic liver abscess.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1981; 283 doi: (Published 26 September 1981) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1981;283:819
  1. J C Moore-Gillon,
  2. S J Eykyn,
  3. I Phillips


    Sixteen patients with pyogenic liver abscesses were studied over 10 years to discover the causative organisms of the condition. Pus was subjected to Gram-negative smear or gas-liquid chromatography to detect volatile acids characteristic of anaerobes and then cultured. All isolates were identified by conventional methods and tested for sensitivity to appropriate antimicrobial agents. Bacteria were grown from the liver abscesses in all 16 patients. Streptococcus milleri Lancefield group F was the commonest organism isolated from the pyogenic liver abscesses, being found in 13 patients. If Strep milleri is isolated care should be taken not to mistake it for an anaerobe, and finding the organism in the blood should alert the clinician to the possible presence of a liver abscesses.