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J Hosp Infect. 1995 Mar;29(3):189-99.

Pillows, an unexpected source of Acinetobacter.

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Department of Hospital Hygiene, Regional Hospital Midden Twente, Hengelo, The Netherlands.


From 1989 until 1992 an increase in the number of isolations of Acinetobacter was observed in a community hospital in The Netherlands. The organisms were spread throughout the hospital and a common source was suspected. Feather pillows were found to harbour high numbers of acinetobacters. Replacement with synthetic pillows and correction of the laundry procedure resulted in a significant reduction of Acinetobacter isolations. A number of isolates from patients and from pillows were indistinguishable using biotyping, antibiogram typing and cell envelope protein typing. By the use of DNA-DNA hybridization most isolates were identified to A. baumannii and the unnamed closely related genomic species 13. A number of isolates, mostly from pillows, were identified as A. radioresistens. The outcome of cultivation, intervention and typing suggests that the feather pillows played an important role in the outbreak.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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