[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Leishmania infantum is a flagellated protozoan parasite that is able to parasitize blood and tissue. Leishmania species cause a spectrum of clinical disease with cutaneous, visceral or mucosal involvement. L. infantum is recognised as a cause of visceral leishmaniasis (VL) and is less commonly reported as a cause of cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) from countries around the Mediterranean basin. This is the first report of imported L. infantum CL to Australia and is remarkable for a 19 year period between the patient’s exposure to an endemic region, and the manifestation of symptoms.
A 76 year old Italian-born man presented to our institution with a non-healing lesion over his upper lip, abutting his nasal mucosa. The patient had travelled to Italy, an endemic area for L. infantum 19 years earlier but had resided in Australia, a non-endemic area since. Histopathology performed on a biopsy of the lesion demonstrated findings consistent with CL. A species specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR) performed on the tissue detected L. infantum. The patient had complete clinical recovery following treatment with Liposomal amphotericin B at a dose of 3 mg/kg for five days followed by a subsequent 3 mg/kg dose at day ten.
L. infantum should be recognised as a cause of imported CL in returned travellers from the Mediterranean. In this case, the incubation period for L. infantum CL was at least 19 years. This case adds to the described spectrum of clinical presentations of leishmaniasis and supports the theory of parasite persistence underlying natural immunity and recurrence of disease. Clinicians should consider L. infantum CL in the differential diagnosis of a non-healing skin lesion in any patient who reports travel to the Mediterranean, even when travel occurred several years before clinical presentation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives:
To determine whether outcomes for patients with cellulitis treated with oral antimicrobials are as good as for those who are treated with parenteral antimicrobials.
A prospective randomized non-inferiority trial was conducted at a tertiary teaching hospital in Melbourne, Australia. Participants were patients referred by the emergency department for treatment of uncomplicated cellulitis with parenteral antimicrobials. Patients were randomized to receive either oral cefalexin or parenteral cefazolin. Parenteral antimicrobials were changed to oral after the area of cellulitis ceased progressing. The primary outcome was days until no advancement of the area of cellulitis. A non-inferiority margin of 15% was set for the oral arm compared with the parenteral arm. Secondary outcomes were failure of treatment, pain, complications and satisfaction with care. This trial is registered with the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12611000685910).
Twenty-four patients were randomized to oral antimicrobials and 23 to parenteral antimicrobials. Mean days to no advancement of cellulitis was 1.29 (SD 0.62) for the oral arm and 1.78 (SD 1.13) for the parenteral arm, with a mean difference of -0.49 (95% CI: -1.02 to +0.04). The upper limit of the 95% CI of the difference in means of +0.04 was below the 15% non-inferiority margin of +0.27 days, indicating non-inferiority. More patients failed treatment in the parenteral arm (5 of 23, 22%) compared with the oral arm (1 of 24, 4%), although this difference was not statistically significant (P=0.10). Pain, complications and satisfaction with care were similar for both groups.
Oral antimicrobials are as effective as parenteral antimicrobials for the treatment of uncomplicated cellulitis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Prosthetic joint infection (PJI) is a serious complication of arthroplasty that is associated with significant mortality, morbidity and costs. PJI is difficult to cure because causative bacteria form and persist in biofilm adherent to the prosthesis surface. PJI can be classified in to early, delayed or late according to the time of onset after insertion of the prosthesis and this classification can help determine pathogenesis and appropriate management. Traditional treatment has been with prolonged intravenous antibiotics and prosthesis exchange, which has been successful in treating infection but is technically difficult and has high rates of associated morbidity. On the basis of in vitro and animal studies, interest has turned to the use of antimicrobials that are particularly active against biofilm-associated bacteria. Recent clinical evidence shows success in more than 77% of early PJI with surgical debridement, retention of prosthesis and the use of rifampicin-based combinations for staphylococcal PJI. Fluoroquinolones are preferred for Gram-negative PJI. Optimal antimicrobial treatment duration and the management of polymicrobial, enterococcal, fungal and culture-negative infections is still yet to be defined but will become more clear as the results of current research comes to hand.
Internal Medicine Journal 06/2014; 44(9). DOI:10.1111/imj.12510 · 1.64 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Given the increasing incidence of bacteraemia causing significant morbidity and mortality in older patients, this study aimed to compare the clinical features, laboratory findings and mortality of patients over the age of 80 to younger adults.
This study was a retrospective, observational study. Participants were taken to be all patients aged 18 and above with confirmed culture positive sepsis, admitted to a large metropolitan hospital in the year 2010. Measurements taken included patient demographics (accommodation, age, sex, comorbidities), laboratory investigations (white cell count, neutrophil count, C-reactive protein, microbiology results), clinical features (vital signs, presence of localising symptoms, complications, place of acquisition).
A total of 1367 patient episodes were screened and 155 met study inclusion criteria. There was no statistically significant difference between likelihood of fever or systolic blood pressure between younger and older populations (p-values of 0.81 and 0.64 respectively). Neutrophil count was higher in the older cohort (p = 0.05). Higher Charlson (J Chronic Dis 40(5):373-383, 1987) comorbidity index, greater age and lower systolic blood pressure were found to be statistically significant predictors of mortality (p-values of 0.01, 0.02 and 0.03 respectively).
The findings of this study indicate older patients are more likely to present without localising features. However, importantly, there is no significant difference in the likelihood of fever or inflammatory markers. This study also demonstrates the importance of the Charlson Index of Comorbidities (J Chronic Dis 40(5):373-383, 1987) as a predictive factor for mortality, with age and hypotension being less important but statistically significant predictive factors of mortality.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mycobacterium Haemophilum is a rare isolate of non-tuberculous mycobacterium which has been reported to affect immunocompromised patients. We report a case of a 32 year old renal transplant patient with mycobacterium haemophilum infection initially involving his left sinus which was treated with appropriate antimicrobial therapy for thirteen months. Two weeks after cessation of antibiotics the infection rapidly recurred in his skin and soft tissues of his hands and feet. This case highlights the difficult diagnostic and therapeutic implications of atypical infections in transplant patients. To our knowledge this is the first reported case of relapsed Mycobacterium Haemophilum infection in a renal transplant recipient.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Patients treated for early prosthetic joint infection (PJI) with surgical debridement, prosthesis retention and biofilm‐active antibiotics, such as rifampicin or fluoroquinolones have a rate of successful infection eradication that is similar to patients treated with the traditional approach of prosthesis exchange. It is therefore important to consider other outcomes after PJI treatment that may influence management decisions, such as function, quality of life (QOL) and treatment‐associated complications. Aims: To describe rates of successful treatment for patients with PJI undergoing surgical debridement, prosthesis retention and biofilm‐active antibiotics and compare their functional outcomes, QOL and complication rates to patients without PJI. Methods: Nineteen patients treated for PJI after hip arthroplasty with debridement, prosthesis retention and biofilm‐active antibiotics were matched to 76 controls who underwent hip arthroplasty with no infection. Results: Cumulative survival free from treatment failure at 2 years was 88% (95% confidence interval, 59–97%). PJI cases had significant improvement from pre‐arthroplasty to 12‐months post‐arthroplasty in function according to Harris Hip Score and QOL according to the 12‐item Short Form Health Survey Physical Component Summary. There was no significant difference in the improvement between controls and cases. PJI was not a risk factor for poor function or QOL. Medical complications occurred more frequently in cases (6/19 (32%)) than controls (9/76 (12%); P = 0.04), with this difference being accounted for by drug reactions. Surgical complications were the same in the two groups. Conclusions
Treatment of PJI with debridement, prosthesis retention and biofilm‐active antibiotics is successful, well tolerated and results in significant improvements in function and QOL, which are similar to patients without PJI.
Internal Medicine Journal 05/2013; 43(7). DOI:10.1111/imj.12174 · 1.64 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The management of prosthetic joint infections remains a clinical challenge, particularly infections due to methicillin-resistant staphylococci. Previously, this infection was considered a contraindication to debridement and retention strategies. This retrospective cohort study examined the treatment and outcomes of patients with arthroplasty infection by methicillin-resistant staphylococci managed by debridement and retention in conjunction with rifampin-fusidic acid combination therapy. Over an 11-year period, there were 43 patients with infection by methicillin-resistant staphylococci managed with debridement and retention. This consisted of close-interval repeated arthrotomies with pulsatile lavage. Rifampin was combined with fusidic acid for the majority of patients (88%). Patients were monitored for a median of 33.5 months (interquartile range, 20 to 54 months). Overall, 9 patients experienced treatment failure, with 12- and 24-month estimates of infection-free survival of 86% (95% confidence interval [CI], 71 to 93%) and 77% (95% CI, 60 to 87%), respectively. The following factors were associated with treatment failure: methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) arthroplasty infection, a single surgical debridement or ≥4 debridements, and the receipt of less than 90 days of antibiotic therapy. Patients with infection by methicillin-resistant coagulase-negative staphylococci (MR-CNS) were less likely to fail treatment. The overall treatment success rate reported in this study is comparable to those of other treatment modalities for prosthetic joint infections by methicillin-resistant staphylococci. Therefore, the debridement and retention of the prosthesis and rifampin-based antibiotic therapy are a valid treatment option for carefully selected patients.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background At the onset of the pandemic H1N1/09 influenza A outbreak in Australia, health authorities devised official clinical case definitions to guide testing and access to antiviral therapy.
Objectives To assess the diagnostic accuracy of these case definitions and to attempt to improve on them using a scoring system based on clinical findings at presentation.
Patients/Methods This study is a retrospective case–control study across three metropolitan Melbourne hospitals and one associated community-based clinic during the influenza season, 2009. Patients presenting with influenza-like illness who were tested for H1N1/09 influenza A were administered a standard questionnaire of symptomatology, comorbidities, and risk factors. Patients with a positive test were compared to those with a negative test. Logistic regression was performed to examine for correlation of clinical features with disease. A scoring system was devised and compared with case definitions used during the pandemic. The main outcome measures were the positive and negative predictive values of our scoring system, based on real-life data, versus the mandated case definitions’.
Results Both the devised scoring system and the case definitions gave similar positive predictive values (38–58% using ascending score groups, against 39–44% using the various case definitions). Negative predictive values were also closely matched (ranging from 94% to 73% in the respective score groups against 83–84% for the case definitions).
Conclusions Accurate clinical diagnosis of H1N1/09 influenza A was difficult and not improved significantly by a structured scoring system. Investment in more widespread availability of rapid and sensitive diagnostic tests should be considered in future pandemic planning.
Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses 06/2012; 7(3). DOI:10.1111/j.1750-2659.2012.00398.x · 2.20 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Murray Valley encephalitis virus (MVEV) is a mosquito-borne virus that is found across Australia, Papua New Guinea and Irian Jaya. MVEV is endemic to northern Australia and causes occasional outbreaks across south-eastern Australia. 2011 saw a dramatic increase in MVEV activity in endemic regions and the re-emergence of MVEV in south-eastern Australia. This followed significant regional flooding and increased numbers of the main mosquito vector, Culex annulirostris, and was evident from the widespread seroconversion of sentinel chickens, fatalities among horses and several cases in humans, resulting in at least three deaths. The last major outbreak in Australia was in 1974, during which 58 cases were identified and the mortality rate was about 20%. With the potential for a further outbreak of MVEV in the 2011-2012 summer and following autumn, we highlight the importance of this disease, its clinical characteristics and radiological and laboratory features. We present a suspected but unproven case of MVEV infection to illustrate some of the challenges in clinical management. It remains difficult to establish an early diagnosis of MVEV infection, and there is a lack of proven therapeutic options.
The Medical journal of Australia 03/2012; 196(5):322-6. DOI:10.5694/mja11.11026 · 4.09 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To assess the secondary attack rates (SAR) and impact of the 2009 H1N1 epidemic in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, and the measures implemented to control household transmission.
Patients with polymerase chain reaction-confirmed influenza A and pandemic H1N1 (pH1N1) were identified from hospital and microbiology laboratory records and asked to take part in a retrospective survey. Information obtained included: the constellation of symptoms, contact history, secondary infection, and household information, including adherence and attitudes towards quarantine measures.
The overall SAR of pH1N1 index patients was 30.6%, but a significantly lower SAR was noted with oseltamivir treatment (36.6% vs 22.8%, p < 0.05). The greatest reduction in SAR was observed when index patients aged 0-4 y received oseltamivir (83.3% vs 22.2%, p < 0.01). Quarantine was requested of 65.8% of patients and 92.8% self-reported adhering to recommendations. pH1N1 index patients, the number of median days bed-bound is 2.5 days, being unable or too sick to work for a median of 5.0 days, and lost a median of 7.0 days of work for reasons related to an influenza-like illness.
The pH1N1 influenza pandemic had a significant clinical impact on households. Public health interventions such as oseltamivir treatment of index cases were beneficial in reducing secondary attack rates, whilst quarantine measures were found to have high rates of self-reported compliance, understanding, and acceptability.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Clin Microbiol Infect 2011; 17: 862–867
Information is required about treatment outcomes of Gram-negative prosthetic joint infections treated with prosthesis retention and surgical debridement, especially where biofilm-active antibiotics such as fluoroquinolones are used. The outcome of 17 consecutive patients with an early Gram-negative prosthetic joint infection who had been treated with prosthesis retention and surgical debridement was analysed. Enterobacteriaceae were isolated in 16 patients and infections were mixed with other organisms in 13 (76%) patients. The median joint age was 17 days and the median duration of symptoms before debridement was 7 days. All patients initially received intravenous β-lactam antibiotic therapy and 14 patients were then treated with oral ciprofloxacin. Treatment failure occurred in two patients over a median period of follow-up of 28 months. In only one patient was a relapsed Gram-negative infection responsible for the failure and this patient had not been treated with ciprofloxacin. The 2-year survival rate free of treatment failure was 94% (95% CI, 63–99%). Prosthesis retention with surgical debridement, in combination with antibiotic regimens including ciprofloxacin, was effective and should be considered for patients with early Gram-negative prosthetic joint infection.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bacterial endocarditis secondary to jet lesions from congenital heart disease is not uncommon, and has been reported on numerous occasions in the literature. These cases usually involve one or more cardiac valves. Our case is that of isolated intracardiac right-sided mural infective endocarditis associated with ventricular septal defect. Importantly, this patient had preceding dental work treated with antibiotic prophylaxis. This case highlights bacteraemia secondary to dental instrumentation versus routine oral hygiene. His presentation was predominantly that of respiratory symptoms and sepsis, and he was culture negative throughout his admission. The lesion was detailed on echocardiography and transoesophageal echocardiography, and treated conservatively. He has subsequently been referred for VSD closure.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An Eritrean-born man observed over an extended period had upper gastrointestinal symptoms, fever, hepatosplenomegaly and pancytopenia in the setting of advanced HIV infection and poor adherence to antiretroviral therapy. Despite thorough investigation, it was not until a repeat gastroscopic examination and gastric biopsy were performed 18 months after initial presentation that Leishmania infection was diagnosed. The species was identified by polymerase chain reaction assay as L. donovani. Physicians managing HIV-infected patients from regions where Leishmania is endemic should consider visceral leishmaniasis, even in patients who have not lived in a Leishmania-endemic region for many years.
The Medical journal of Australia 04/2010; 192(8):474-5. · 4.09 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To describe the case characteristics and outcomes of patients hospitalised with pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza infection during the first 2 months of the epidemic.
Prospective case series of 112 patients admitted to seven hospitals in Melbourne with laboratory-confirmed pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza between 1 May and 17 July 2009.
Details of case characteristics, risk factors for severe disease, treatment and clinical course.
Of 112 hospitalised patients, most presented with cough (88%) and/or fever (82%), but several (4%) had neither symptom. A quarter of female patients (15) were pregnant or in the post-partum period. Patients presenting with multifocal changes on chest x-ray had significantly longer hospital lengths of stay, and were more likely to require intensive care unit admission. Thirty patients required admission to an intensive care unit, and three died during their acute illness. The median length of intensive care admission was 10.5 days (interquartile range, 5-16 days).
This study highlights risk factors for severe disease, particularly pregnancy. Clinical and public health planning for upcoming influenza seasons should take into account the spectrum and severity of clinical infection demonstrated in this report, and the need to concentrate resources effectively in high-risk patient groups.
The Medical journal of Australia 01/2010; 192(2):84-6. · 4.09 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present the first six cases of H1N1 influenza 09 (confirmed by a polymerase chain reaction test from nasopharyngeal swabs) in patients requiring admission to intensive care in Australia (in three hospitals in the north-western suburbs of Melbourne). These cases highlight the small but significant risk of life-threatening respiratory failure associated with H1N1 influenza 09 infection.
The Medical journal of Australia 09/2009; 191(3):154-6. · 4.09 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: For pandemic influenza planning, realistic estimates of personal protective equipment (PPE) and antiviral medication required for hospital healthcare workers (HCWs) are vital. In this simulation study, a patient with suspected avian or pandemic influenza (API) sought treatment at 9 Australian hospital emergency departments where patient-staff interactions during the first 6 hours of hospitalization were observed. Based on World Health Organization definitions and guidelines, the mean number of "close contacts" of the API patient was 12.3 (range 6-17; 85% HCWs); mean "exposures" were 19.3 (range 15-26). Overall, 20-25 PPE sets were required per patient, with variable HCW compliance for wearing these items (93% N95 masks, 77% gowns, 83% gloves, and 73% eye protection). Up to 41% of HCW close contacts would have qualified for postexposure antiviral prophylaxis. These data indicate that many current national stockpiles of PPE and antiviral medication are likely inadequate for a pandemic.