Your healthcare provider will diagnose a staph infection by taking skin or fluid cultures and testing them for signs of drug-resistant bacteria. The sample is sent to a lab where it is placed in a dish of nutrients that encourage bacterial growth (culture) and then studied. Results take about 48 hours, but newer tests that can detect staph in DNA in a matter of hours are now becoming more available.
Your healthcare provider may recommend one of the following tests:
A skin biopsy and culture from the infected site.
A culture of the fluid from the infection.
A blood culture.
A sputum culture through coughing or bronchoscopy, if pneumonia is present or suspected.
A urine culture if a urinary tract infection is present or suspected.