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Am J Med. 1978 May;64(5):808-13.

Lactobacillemia--report of nine cases. Important clinical and therapeutic considerations.


Serious infections due to lactobacilli have been rarely cited. We report our findings in nine recent patients with lactobacillemia. In the combined literature and current experience, endocarditis and sepsis from localized suppuration were the most common clinical syndromes, most frequently arising from prior oropharyngeal infections. Lactobacillus endocarditis showed a predilection for left-sided cardiac involvement (100 per cent) and systemic arterial embolization (55 per cent). The nine clinical isolates were tested for minimal inhibitory and bactericidal concentrations (MICs and MBCs) against five drugs with broad gram-positive spectrums; of note, these organisms demonstrated a high incidence of both unachievable MBCs (64 per cent) and widely disparate (greater than 100 fold) MIC:MBC ratios (38 per cent). This is in accord with observations in Lactobacillus endocarditis of poor in vivo clinical response despite "appropriate" regimens and achievable MICs of the organisms. Bactericidal synergistic studies on two endocarditis isolates indicated that the penicillins plus aminoglycosides may be potentially useful in the treatment of deep-seated Lactobacillus infections when single antimicrobials fail to achieve a cure.

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