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Clin Infect Dis. 2002 Aug 15;35(4):390-4. Epub 2002 Jul 23.

Nocardia infection in chronic granulomatous disease.

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Laboratory of Host Defenses, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


To determine the clinical characteristics and outcome of Nocardia infection in patients with chronic granulomatous disease (CGD), we reviewed data on 28 episodes of Nocardia infection in 23 patients with CGD. All episodes involved pulmonary infection. The frequency of disseminated nocardiosis was 25% for the case series overall, but it was 56% among episodes in patients receiving neither interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) nor sulfonamide prophylaxis. Patients receiving prophylaxis with IFN-gamma and/or a sulfonamide were significantly less likely to have disseminated nocardiosis than were patients not receiving these medications, and no patient receiving both medications developed disseminated nocardiosis. One-third of the patients had concomitant fungal infections, and 2 patients had concomitant Legionella infections. The majority of patients were successfully treated with a sulfonamide-containing regimen, even though some patients had developed Nocardia infection while receiving sulfonamide prophylaxis. Nocardia infections in patients with CGD are not usually fatal if treated properly, and prophylaxis with IFN-gamma and a sulfonamide may protect against dissemination.

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