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Table 1 Definitions of qualitative, semi-quantitative and quantitative culture for wound swabs and biopsies

From: Protocol for a systematic review of quantitative burn wound microbiology in the management of burns patients

  Swab or biopsy
Qualitative Presence or absence of growth
Semi-quantitative Grading of the bacterial presence as either/or ± (scanty), + (few), ++ (moderate) and +++ (numerous) or as categories (e.g. <105 CFU/g)
Quantitative Where an absolute quantity is provided (following e.g. Miles and Misra quantification [22])