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J Am Soc Nephrol. 1998 May;9(5):869-76.

EPIBACDIAL: a multicenter prospective study of risk factors for bacteremia in chronic hemodialysis patients.

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  • 1Service de Maladies Infectieuses et Tropicales, University of Nancy Medical Center, Vandoeuvre, France.


Bacteremic infections are a major cause of mortality and morbidity in chronic hemodialysis patients. New developments in managing these patients (erythropoietin therapy, nasal mupirocin, long-term implanted catheters, and synthetic membranes) may have altered the epidemiologic patterns of bacteremia in dialysis patients. This multicenter prospective cross-sectional study was carried out to determine the current incidence of and risk factors for bacteremia in chronic hemodialysis patients in France. A total of 988 adults on chronic hemodialysis for 1 mo or longer was followed up prospectively for 6 mo in 19 French dialysis units. The factors associated with the development of at least one bacteremic episode over 6 mo were determined using the multivariate Cox proportional hazards model. Staphylococcus aureus (n=20) and coagulase-negative staphylococci (n=15) were responsible for most of the 51 bacteremic episodes recorded. The incidence of bacteremia was 0.93 episode per 100 patient-months. Four risk factors for bacteremia were identified: (1) vascular access (catheter versus fistula: RR=7.6; 95% CI, 3.7 to 15.6); (2) history of bacteremia (> or =2 versus no previous episode: RR=7.3; 95% CI, 3.2 to 16.4); (3) immunosuppressive therapy (current versus no: RR=3.0; 95% CI, 1.0 to 6.1); and (4) corpuscular hemoglobin (per 1 g/dl increment: RR=0.7; 95% CI, 0.6 to 0.9). Catheters, especially long-term implanted catheters, were found to be the leading risk factor of bacteremia in chronic hemodialysis patients. There was a trend toward recurrence of bacteremia that was not associated with chronic staphylococcal nasal carriage. Synthetic membranes were not associated with a lower risk of bacteremia in this population of well dialyzed patients, but anemia linked to resistance to erythropoietin appeared to be a possible risk factor for bacteremia.

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