Send to

Choose Destination
Clin Infect Dis. 2006 Jan 15;42(2):170-8. Epub 2005 Dec 13.

Control and outcome of a large outbreak of colonization and infection with glycopeptide-intermediate Staphylococcus aureus in an intensive care unit.

Author information

Medical-Surgical Intensive Care Unit, Louis-Mourier Teaching Hospital, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Colombes, France.



Glycopeptide-intermediate Staphylococcus aureus (GISA) is emerging as a cause of nosocomial infection and outbreaks of infection and colonization in intensive care units (ICUs). We describe an outbreak of GISA colonization/infection and the ensuing control measures in an ICU and investigate outcomes of the affected patients.


We describe an outbreak of GISA colonization and infection that affected 21 patients in a medical ICU at a tertiary care teaching hospital, as well as the measures taken to eradicate the GISA strain.


Recognition of the outbreak was difficult. Infections, all of which were severe, were diagnosed in 11 of 21 patients. Patient isolation and barrier precautions failed when used alone. Addition of a stringent policy of restricted admissions, twice daily environmental cleaning, and implementation of hand decontamination with a hydroalcoholic solution led to outbreak termination. This was associated with increases in workload, despite a marked decrease in the number of admissions.


This first description of a large outbreak of GISA colonization and infection underlines the importance of routine GISA-strain detection when methicillin-resistant S. aureus is isolated. Outbreak control may be difficult to achieve.

Comment in

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center