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Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 1991 Sep;12(9):535-9.

Microbial growth and endotoxin production in the intravenous anesthetic propofol.

Author information

1
Hospital Infections Program, Centers for Disease Control, United States Department of Health and Human Services, Atlanta, Georgia.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

In this study, we measured microbial growth and endotoxin production in the intravenous anesthetic propofol using 10 different microbial strains; 6 isolated from outbreak cases and 4 from laboratory stock cultures.

DESIGN:

In each trial, endotoxin-free glass tubes containing 10 ml propofol were inoculated with 10(0)-10(3) CFU/ml of the test organism and incubated at 30 degrees C for 72 hours.

SETTING:

In May and June 1990, the Centers for Disease Control received reports of 5 outbreaks in 5 states of postsurgical patient infections and/or pyrogenic reactions. Epidemiologic and laboratory investigations implicated extrinsic contamination of an intravenous anesthetic, propofol, as the probable source of these outbreaks.

RESULTS:

After 24 hours, 9 of the 10 cultures increased in viable counts by 3 to 6 logs. At least 1 ng/ml of endotoxin was produced within 24 hours by Escherichia coli, Enterobacter cloacae, and Acinetobacter calcoaceticus subspecies anitratus.

CONCLUSIONS:

Propofol can support rapid microbial growth and endotoxin production. To avoid infectious complications, scrupulous aseptic technique should be used when preparing or administering this anesthetic.

Comment in

PMID:
1940276
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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