Pseudomonas Aeruginosa

Pseudomonas Aeruginosa


  • Gram (-), small, slender rod usually straight but may be slightly curved.
  • Motile with 1 to 3 polar flagella
  • Nosporeforming; non encapsulated
  • Stains readily with aniline dyes
  • Other strains have abundant polysaccharide capsule
  • Present in small numbers in normal intestinal flora and in skin.
  • Give rise to blue-green pus
  • Aerobic;  some strains anaerobic
  • Requires an optimum growth temperature of 37oC for 24 hrs incubation period.
  • Colonies non-pigmented, large, soft, smooth, spreading and grayish in color.
  • Killed by heating at 55oC for 1 hour
  • Resistant to penicillin and most broad spectrum antibiotics
  • Sensitive to polymyxin B, neomycin, oxytetracycline and streptomycin

Pathology and Symptomatology

  • Pulmonary infections
  • Swimmer’s Ear
  • Burn infections (localized vascular damage, tissue necrosis and bacteremia)
  • Gastrointestinal and urinary infections
  • Eye, central nervous system and musculoskeletal system infections
  • Skin lesion which is initially seen as erythematous vesicles that progresses to hemorrhage, necrosis and ulceration.


  • For superficial skin lesions – topical Polymyxin B ointment
  • For eye infections – strong solutions of polymyxin and streptomycin
  • For middle ear infections – polymyxin b and streptomycin solutions; 0.5 to 1% acetic acid as alternative drugs
  • For generalized forms of disease multiple drug therapy is recommended.
  • 0.5% silver nitrate solution in continuously soaked dressings will reduce the total amount of secondary infection.


Photo credits:

Daisy Jane Antipuesto RN MN

Currently a Nursing Local Board Examination Reviewer. Subjects handled are Pediatric, Obstetric and Psychiatric Nursing. Previous work experiences include: Clinical instructor/lecturer, clinical coordinator (Level II), caregiver instructor/lecturer, NC2 examination reviewer and staff/clinic nurse. Areas of specialization: Emergency room, Orthopedic Ward and Delivery Room. Also an IELTS passer.

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