Microbiology is a branch of science which deals with microbes, their characters, applications and other related concepts. It also extends to aspects of how the body deals with microbes, how to control them for health and other benefits. Microbiology has come a long way since the discovery of microbes. It has contributed significantly to human life for various daily needs. The knowledge is used in health care for prevention of diseases, diagnosis, sterilization methods and drug production.
Importance of microbiology
Use of microbiology in healthcare is concerned with diagnosis. It also helps to see how the patient’s health progresses during the treatment.
• Many patients admitted to the hospital are prescribed with antibiotic as part of treatment. But not all of them will be effective to the patients. Then to test effectiveness, the patient’s sputum, fecal, urine or blood samples are taken. This sample is examined for the type of microbe and based on the identification, a suitable antibiotic is prescribed.
• Its useful to identify the blood groups of the people by simple immune reactions. Identification of blood group helps to infuse correct blood group in case of emergency and avoid complications.
• It also helps detect diseases like Tuberculosis by simple skin test namely the Mantoux test.
• Also, diagnostic tests like Elisa, electrophoresis and radioimmuno assay also use principles of microbiology for identification of disease.
• Study of microbial diseases; i.e. what microorganism cause diseases like protozoa, bacterial, viral, fungal etc. Their mechanism and pathology of illness etc.
• Diagnosis of disease; Even diagnosis of the disease-causing microbe is taught so as to give right drug and combat infection effectively. This diagnosis includes methods like microscopic observation, elisa tests, western-blot etc.
• Treatment of disease. One cannot blindly give an antibiotic if there is an infection. Identificationof specific microbe help to decide which antibiotic is needed. For example presence of myco-bacterium requires anti-TB antibiotics and not routine antibiotics for complete cure. This identification of the specific organism is possible by microbiological assays.