Living With Disabilities/fnab


i recently had an FNA biopsy test. the culture and sensitivity report says that '' ANAEROBES NOT ISOLATED ''
please help me to understand what does it means.

Dear Maham Majid,

I understand from your question that you have recently had a FNA biopsy test. This is a Fine Needle Aspiration Biopsy test. This is a diagnostic procedure used to investigate lumps/masses that are generally located just under the skin. A fine, hollow needle is inserted into the mass in order to collect cells that can be stained and examined under the microscope. Procedures such as these are usually used for one of two reasons:

a. To find out what it is that has caused the lump/mass to grow in the first place.
b. If the lump is already known to be a particular type of tumor, then to assess how effective treatment has been.

You have not informed me of the reason why the FNA biopsy test was performed, therefore I can only offer a very generalized response to your question.

Depending upon the reason for your having the FNA test, various biological samples may have been collected for clinical evaluation. The culture and sensitivity report will be an explanation of this, in that it should discuss what was, or was not, found. A clinician may wish to look for the presence of bacteria, fungi, or mutated cells, depending upon what they suspect. This will provide an indication as to what may be causing the lump/mass to grow.

Anaerobes are simply bacteria that can grow and multiply in the absence of oxygen, or where there is very little oxygen present. So, to state "anaerobes not isolated" would suggest that such bacteria were either not present, or that the test was not able to locate their presence (perhaps because it was not sensitive enough).

This is as much as I am able to tell you, without requesting a great deal more detail from you as to the nature of the test, and the reasons why it was necessary.

I am, however, a little concerned that you seem to be having a lot of health problems at the moment, that you either do not seem to be getting a good explanation for, or that you are finding the explanation hard to understand. I truly believe that doctors and their patients should have a good, honest and open relationship; one where the patient can discuss their concerns honestly, and the doctor responds with effective treatment - treatment that is agreed with the patient beforehand, and is explained clearly to the patient. Patients NEED to be able to understand what is going on, as this helps them to understand their illness, its treatment, and the likely side-effects of any treatment. Patients are supposed to give INFORMED CONSENT before agreeing to treatment. This implies that they have discussed their illness, its nature, treatment and possible side-effects (and have understood these) BEFORE they agree to have a treatment.

Perhaps you might benefit more from receiving care from a doctor who IS able to effectively explain your illness and treatment to you, and who is able to answer any questions about treatment that you do not understand? If you do not feel that your current doctor explains matters effectively, then maybe it would be a good idea to register with a better one?

If this is not the case, and it is rather that you need to ask a lot of questions regarding your illness and treatment because you are worried or anxious (which is perfectly understandable when somebody is ill, especially with a long-term illness, which can be very debilitating) then the best thing for you to do is explain your worry or anxiety to your doctor. A good doctor will not criticize or judge you for feeling this way. A good doctor will try to understand why you feel anxious/worried, and the effect that your long-term illness is having upon this. They will try to help you find solutions to ease your concerns, perhaps by explaining matters more clearly, or by listening sympathetically to you. Long-term illness, by its very nature, is extremely stressful, as it can lead to you having time off work, time in hospital, or needing lots of tests and treatment. None of these are things that people tend to want, or enjoy. I am sure, therefore, that a good doctor would understand that patients with long-term illness ( or disabilities) can feel distressed by this.

Just a (hopefully helpful) suggestion...
Elaine Ellis.  

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Elaine Ellis


I am happy to respond to a wide variety of questions. I understand that everyone's experience of disability is very personal in nature - dependent upon such factors as circumstances, life experiences, personality, support networks... Therefore, I would expect questions to be highly variable in nature. In the main, I would be happy to respond to questions which ask about the nature of disabilities (conditions), about diagnosis and treatment, about living with disability (its effect upon social and working life), and about means of support. I am also happy to answer questions that many consider to be sensitive, or personal, in nature; I will do so with as much empathy, and sensitivity, as I can. These include questions about the effects of disability upon relationships, or questions relating to the emotional aspect of disability (for example, disability leading to depression). Obviously, I will be unable to respond to questions concerning subjects with which I am unfamiliar, or which require a level of detail in the response that I am simply unable to provide. However, I will generally point out where I am "out of my depth", and will either state this, or will ask permission to research my response a little longer before committing to it.


My experience in the field of disability is both personal, and professional. I have a B.A. Honours Degree in Social Work (with professional Dip. S.W.) from Lancaster University. I have spent several years working as a Social Worker; initially within Mental Health Services (a medium secure facility), then in a Hospital Discharge Team, and finally in Adult Community Services. I am currently undertaking further "career development", and am part way through postgraduate studies in Psychology. Professionally, I have worked with mentally disordered offenders, with people returning home from hospital, and with elderly and disabled adults living in the community. I have knowledge of the mental health system; of treatments, diagnoses and of side-effects. I also have knowledge of the home care system, and of arranging residential care. Personally, I class myself as a disabled person - although, I must admit that the realisation of this was slow to dawn! I can empathise with many who have for years attempted to cope with as minimal aid as possible, either through lack of knowledge concerning disability rights, or through lack of available assistance. I have long-term health problems that include Endometriosis (a gynaecological condition), chronic respiratory (sinus) problems, Asthma, chronic low Iron levels, and M.E. (chronic fatigue/ fibromyalgia). My Endometriosis was finally diagnosed, after YEARS of suffering, in 2011. I have since had THREE surgeries. I have also had sinus surgery, and am awaiting intensive treatment for my M.E. I trust this qualifies me adequately to assist others with queries concerning disability!

O-Levels (with grades): (1987) English Literature (A) English Language (A) Art (A) French (A) German (B) Mathematics (C) Biology (C) Physics (C) Chemistry (C) A-Levels (with grades): (1990) General Studies (B) French (C) English Literature (C) German (C) R.S.A. level one Computer Literacy and Information Technology (1995) Certificate: Teaching English As A Foreign Language (1998) B.A. Honours Degree in European Studies with German (1994) 2:1 B.A. Honours Degree in Social Work with Dip.S.W. (2003) Currently undertaking postgraduate study in Psychology.

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