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Am J Infect Control. 1995 Apr;23(2):87-94.

Recommendations for preventing the spread of vancomycin resistance: recommendations of the Hospital Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC).

[No authors listed]


A rapid increase in the incidence of infection and colonization with vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) has been reported from U.S. hospitals in the last 5 years. This increase poses several problems, including a) the lack of available antimicrobials for therapy of infections due to VRE, since most VRE are also resistant to multiple other drugs, e.g., aminoglycosides and ampicillin, previously used for the treatment of infections due to these organisms, and b) the possibility that the vancomycin resistance genes present in VRE may be transferred to other gram-positive microorganisms such as Staphylococcus aureus. An increased risk of VRE infection and colonization has been associated with previous vancomycin and/or multi-antimicrobial therapy, severe underlying disease or immunosuppression, and intra-abdominal surgery. Because enterococci can be found in the normal gastrointestinal or female genital tract, most enterococcal infections have been attributed to endogenous sources within the individual patient. However, recent reports of outbreaks and endemic infections due to enterococci, including VRE, have shown that patient-to-patient transmission of the microorganisms can occur either via direct contact or indirectly via hands of personnel or contaminated patient-care equipment or environmental surfaces.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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