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Epidemiol Infect. 1987 Oct;99(2):445-53.

Respiratory tract infections due to Branhamella catarrhalis: epidemiological data from Western Australia.

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  • 1School of Medical Technology, Western Australian Institute of Technology, Bentley.


During a 3-year period Branhamella catarrhalis was isolated in significant numbers from 239 (1.3%) of 19,488 specimens of sputum sent for routine microbiological examination at a 700-bed general hospital. The majority of patients (83%) were over 60 years of age and 65% were male. There was a distinct seasonal variation in isolations with a peak incidence during the winter and early spring, a pattern not found with other pathogens. Susceptibility to amoxycillin decreased by approximately 50% over the 3 years, corresponding to an increased incidence of beta-lactamase-producing strains. There were minimal changes in susceptibility to other antimicrobial agents. Underlying pulmonary disease was the major factor predisposing to B. catarrhalis infection, and 71% of patients were smokers or ex-smokers.

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