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J Hosp Infect. 2006 Oct;64(2):129-35. Epub 2006 Aug 8.

Nosocomial outbreak of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections related to a flexible bronchoscope.

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Infectious Diseases Unit, Hospital de La Ribera, Alzira, Valencia, Spain.


An outbreak of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections affecting 17 patients was detected in the 27-bed intensive care unit (ICU) of a community hospital from 1 July to 30 September 2003. An ambidirectional cohort study was conducted to identify the risk factors for infection. Nosocomial infections were defined using the criteria of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Random arbitrary polymorphic DNA-polymerase chain reaction was used for genotypic characterization. Logistic regression analyses demonstrated that case patients were more likely than non-cases to have had a longer stay in the ICU, and to have undergone mechanical ventilation and antimicrobial treatment. The multi-variate analysis identified recent bronchoscopy [risk ratio (RR) 3.8, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.5-3.9] and exposure to an infected patient (RR 2.9, 95% CI 1.1-3.7) as independent risk factors. Molecular analysis showed that of the nine isolates available, four patients had a similar strain. The factor with the strongest influence on the risk of death was infection with P. aeruginosa (RR 2.1, 95% CI 1.0-2.4, P=0.04). A combined infection control strategy was implemented, including strict compliance with isolation precautions and recommendations for cleaning and disinfecting bronchoscopes, and a sharp reduction in the incidence of P. aeruginosa infection followed. It is thought that this outbreak was caused by patient-to-patient transmission and infection from a common source, i.e. the flexible bronchoscope.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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