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Epidemiol Infect. 2008 Aug;136(8):1009-19. Epub 2007 Sep 25.

Acinetobacter infections: a growing threat for critically ill patients.

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  • 1Alfa Institute of Biomedical Sciences (AIBS), Athens, Greece.


There has been increasing concern regarding the rise of Acinetobacter infections in critically ill patients. We extracted information regarding the relative frequency of Acinetobacter pneumonia and bacteraemia in intensive-care-unit (ICU) patients and the antimicrobial resistance of Acinetobacter isolates from studies identified in electronic databases. Acinetobacter infections most frequently involve the respiratory tract of intubated patients and Acinetobacter pneumonia has been more common in critically ill patients in Asian (range 4-44%) and European (0-35%) hospitals than in United States hospitals (6-11%). There is also a gradient in Europe regarding the proportion of ICU-acquired pneumonias caused by Acinetobacter with low numbers in Scandinavia, and gradually rising in Central and Southern Europe. A higher proportion of Acinetobacter isolates were resistant to aminoglycosides and piperacillin/tazobactam in Asian and European countries than in the United States. The data suggest that Acinetobacter infections are a growing threat affecting a considerable proportion of critically ill patients, especially in Asia and Europe.

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