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South Med J. 1993 Jun;86(6):615-8.

Group A streptococcal bacteremia in a mid-south children's hospital.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Tennessee, Memphis.


We reviewed microbiology and infection control records at a Memphis children's hospital from 1982 to 1990 to obtain epidemiologic, clinical, and microbiologic data on group A streptococcal (GAS) bacteremia. Varicella was the underlying condition in 8 of 37 (22%) patients identified and was often associated with severe GAS disease, including toxic shock-like syndrome. Twenty-one of 31 (68%) available blood isolates made GAS pyrogenic exotoxin (SPE) B by Ouchterlony immunodiffusion; gene probes identified speC and speA in 18 (58%) and 8 (26%) isolates, respectively. The B/C toxin profile, identified in 11 (35%) isolates, was the most common profile in this population, and the overall rate for speC was higher than rates recently reported from other areas. Although the clinical significance of the toxin profiles in our population is unclear, these data emphasize the geographic and temporal variability in the microbiologic properties of GAS disease.

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