What is Pseudomonas aeruginosa?
Pseudomonas is a family of bacteria and within the group, there are several sub species that are found in soil and groundwater.
These bacteria are often found in carbon filters, cooling towers, drinking water dispensers, bottled water, and of course, water taps.
Pseudomonas are Gram negative rod shaped, motile bacteria (Not virus) which are very easily identifiable under the microscope. They will grow on TVC media or specific Pseudomonas media. The subspecies can be identified using differential media techniques.
They typically cause the distinctive sour smell in damp dishcloths and would be found in large numbers in biofilms in tanks, pipes etc. This is the slime or biofilm that can be felt by hand in contaminated water systems. It is this slime that can make systems difficult to disinfect and is often where Legionella bacteria are found.
Most of the subspecies are benign and cause no health risks. However there is a Subspecies called Pseudomonas aeruginosa, an opportunistic pathogen found in, for example, untreated pool and spa baths or infections in open wounds or burns.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria can cause ear and eye infections. These infections will typically occur in people who are immuno-suppressed, such as cancer and HIV patients and persons with severe burns, diabetes mellitus or cystic fibrosis, which is why it is such an issue in Healthcare environments.
Indeed Pseudomonas aeruginosa is one of the more common causes of healthcare-associated infections and is increasingly resistant to many antibiotics. In hospitals, the organism contaminates moist or wet reservoirs such as respiratory equipment and indwelling catheters. Infections can occur on the body area, however they are particularly serious in the bloodstream.
Our Pseudomonas Management Services
HBE are a leading provider of specialist Pseudomonas services. We undertake sampling regimes in specialist sectors such as Healthcare, and support building maintenance managers in taking effective measures when positive samples are found.
There are various water treatments available for example, chlorine, chlorine dioxide, ultraviolet, copper silver ionisation, ozone etc., which if suitably controlled, will reduce levels considerably but may not eliminate the bacteria.
For further information about our Pseudomonas services and our experience within the Healthcare sector, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0845 6399 673 / +353 (0)1 257 3141 if calling from Ireland.
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