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Clin Infect Dis. 1994 Jun;18(6):938-41.

Multiple liver abscesses due to Yersinia enterocolitica discloses primary hemochromatosis: three cases reports and review.

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Service of Internal Medicine, Bellvitge Hospital, University of Barcelona, Spain.


We report three cases of multiple liver abscesses due to Yersinia enterocolitica that led to previously unknown diagnoses of primary hemochromatosis. Y. enterocolitica is an iron-dependent bacterium that relies entirely on exogenous iron for growth. A review of the literature with use of MEDLINE (National Library of Medicine, Bethesda, MD) disclosed 35 cases of Y. enterocolitica liver abscesses; 21 (60%) of these cases were associated with hemochromatosis. In 11 of the remaining 14 cases, two common manifestations of hemochromatosis, diabetes mellitus and cirrhosis of the liver, also were present; these findings were significant. Finally, we emphasize that when iron overload cannot be documented at the time of diagnosis of the liver abscess, long-term follow-up for determination of increasing iron stores is mandatory. With this approach, most manifestations of hemochromatosis in asymptomatic patients can be prevented.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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