Clinical Focus

  • Fellow
  • Healthcare Epidemiology
  • Antibiotic Stewardship

Professional Education

  • Bachelor of Science, University of Richmond (2007)
  • Doctor of Medicine, University of Virginia (2012)
  • Master of Public Health, University of Virginia (2012)

All Publications

  • A 36-Year-Old Woman From West Africa With Newly Diagnosed AIDS and a Spinal Cord Mass CLINICAL INFECTIOUS DISEASES Hitchcock, M. M., Aggarwal, I., Chang, A., Weiel, J. J., Szumowski, J. D. 2018; 66 (7): 1147–49

    View details for DOI 10.1093/cid/cix894

    View details for Web of Science ID 000427897000028

  • Low Yield of FilmArray GI Panel in Hospitalized Patients with Diarrhea: an Opportunity for Diagnostic Stewardship Intervention. Journal of clinical microbiology Hitchcock, M. M., Gomez, C. A., Banaei, N. 2018; 56 (3)


    The FilmArray GI panel (BioFire Diagnostics, Salt Lake City, UT) is a multiplex, on-demand, sample-to-answer, real-time PCR assay for the syndromic diagnosis of infectious gastroenteritis that has become widely adopted and, in some instances, has replaced conventional stool culture and parasite exams. Conventional testing has historically been restricted among hospitalized patients due to low diagnostic yield, but it is not known whether use of the FilmArray GI panel should be circumscribed. Cary-Blair stool samples submitted for FilmArray GI panel in adult patients admitted to an academic hospital from August 2015 to January 2017 were included in this study. Of 481 tests performed >72 h after admission, 29 (6.0%) were positive, all for a single target, excludingClostridium difficileWhen follow-up tests beyond the first positive per hospitalization were excluded, 20 (4.8%) of 414 tests were positive. There was no difference in yield by immune status. Most targets detected were viral (79% of all positives [n= 23] and 70% in unique patients [n= 14]). All four cases positive for a bacterial target could not be confirmed and presentation was atypical, suggesting possible false positives. After removing potential false positives and chronic viral shedders, the yield was 3.0% (12/406). Repeat testing performed >72 h after admission and following a negative result within the first 72 h was done in 19 patients and 100% (22/22) remained negative. The FilmArray GI panel has low yield in adult patients hospitalized for >72 h, similar to conventional stool microbiology tests, and it is reasonable to restrict its use in this population.

    View details for DOI 10.1128/JCM.01558-17

    View details for PubMedID 29237784

  • Is Follow-up Testing with FilmArray Gastrointestinal Multiplex PCR Panel Necessary? Journal of clinical microbiology Park, S., Hitchcock, M. M., Gomez, C. A., Banaei, N. 2017


    FilmArray GI Panel (BioFire Diagnostics, Salt Lake City, UT) is a simple, sample-to-answer, on-demand, multiplex, nucleic acid amplification test for syndromic diagnosis of infectious gastroenteritis. The aim of this study was to measure the yield of follow-up testing with FilmArray GI Panel within 4 weeks of an initial test. Consecutive adult and pediatric patients tested at an academic institution between August 2015 and June 2016 were included in this study. Of 145 follow-up tests in 106 unique patients with an initial negative result, 134 (92.4%) tests and 98 (92.5%) patients remained negative upon follow-up testing. Excluding targets that are not reported at our institution (Clostridium difficile, enteroaggregative Escherichia coli, enteropathogenic E. coli, and enterotoxigenic E. coli), 137 (94.5%) follow-up tests and 101 (95.3%) patients remained negative. Weekly conversion rates were not significantly different across the 4-week follow-up interval. No epidemiological or clinical factors were significantly associated with a negative to positive conversion. Of 80 follow-up tests in patients with an initial positive result, 43 (53.8%) remained positive for the same target, 34 (42.5%) were negative, and 3 were positive for a different target (3.8%). Follow-up testing with FilmArray GI Panel within 4 weeks of a negative result rarely changed the initial result, and the follow-up test reverted to negative less than half the time after an initial positive result. In the absence of clinical or epidemiological evidence for a new infection, follow-up testing should be limited and FilmArray GI Panel should not be used as a test of cure.

    View details for DOI 10.1128/JCM.02354-16

    View details for PubMedID 28122874