[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The prevalence, distribution, and antimicrobial susceptibility of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in Belgian pig farms has been investigated. To that end, nasal samples were collected from 1,500 pigs on 50 farms randomly selected over Belgium. Both closed (breeding or farrow-to-finish) and open (fattening) farms were included. Within closed farms different age groups were investigated. A total number of 663 (44%) pigs belonging to 34 (68%) farms carried MRSA. According to their management practice, MRSA was detected on 94% of the open farms and 56% of the closed farms. Focusing on the in-herd prevalence among fattening pigs for both management systems, a significantly higher rate was found in open farms (72%) compared to closed farms (26%). Within the closed farms, piglets (41%) showed a higher MRSA prevalence than sows (26%) and fattening pigs (26%). All strains tested were ST398 and showed mainly spa-type t011, as commonly found on pig herds in Europe. Less dominating spa-types were t034, t567, and t2970. The MRSA strains carried two SCCmec-types, type IVa or V. All 643 MRSA strains were resistant to tetracycline and additional resistances to trimethoprim (97%), lincosamides (73%), macrolides (56%), aminoglycosides (48%), and fluoroquinolones (32%) were found. Multiresistance (defined as resistance to four or more non-β-lactam antimicrobial classes) was found in 63% of the tested strains. In conclusion, a high prevalence of MRSA was found in Belgian pig farms, with the highest prevalence in open farms. In accordance with other European countries, age-related and management-related differences in MRSA prevalence were observed that should be considered when control strategies are outlined.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Microbial drug resistance (Larchmont, N.Y.)
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Little is known about the extent of Clostridium difficile infection in Europe. Our aim was to obtain a more complete overview of C difficile infection in Europe and build capacity for diagnosis and surveillance.
We set up a network of 106 laboratories in 34 European countries. In November, 2008, one to six hospitals per country, relative to population size, tested stool samples of patients with suspected C difficile infection or diarrhoea that developed 3 or more days after hospital admission. A case was defined when, subsequently, toxins were identified in stool samples. Detailed clinical data and stool isolates were collected for the first ten cases per hospital. After 3 months, clinical data were followed up.
The incidence of C difficile infection varied across hospitals (weighted mean 4·1 per 10,000 patient-days per hospital, range 0·0-36·3). Detailed information was obtained for 509 patients. For 389 of these patients, isolates were available for characterisation. 65 different PCR ribotypes were identified, of which 014/020 (61 patients [16%]), 001 (37 [9%]), and 078 (31 [8%]) were the most prevalent. The prevalence of PCR-ribotype 027 was 5%. Most patients had a previously identified risk profile of old age, comorbidity, and recent antibiotic use. At follow up, 101 (22%) of 455 patients had died, and C difficile infection played a part in 40 (40%) of deaths. After adjustment for potential confounders, an age of 65 years or older (adjusted odds ratio 3·26, 95% CI 1·08-9·78; p=0·026), and infection by PCR-ribotypes 018 (6·19, 1·28-29·81; p=0·023) and 056 (13·01; 1·14-148·26; p=0·039) were significantly associated with complicated disease outcome.
PCR ribotypes other than 027 are prevalent in European hospitals. The data emphasise the importance of multicountry surveillance to detect and control C difficile infection in Europe.
European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
As the prompt detection of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) carriers upon admission is fundamental in the MRSA prevention strategy of our hospital, the infection control team
is eagerly seeking the most sensitive and rapid screening method. The aim of this study was to compare the performance of
two molecular techniques with a conventional MRSA-selective culture test (Bio-Rad chromogenic MRSASelect) in order to elucidate
the suitability of the assays specifically in an expected low MRSA prevalence population.
Patients and Methods:
The anterior nares and throat of 500 patients and visitors attending the emergency department of Sint-Jan General Hospital
between May and June 2007 were sampled, and MRSA carriage was determined by selective culture after enrichment and the BD
GeneOhmTM StaphSR and the Cepheid XpertTM MRSA assays.
Eight MRSA carriers were detected by selective culture (1.6% prevalence). The sensitivity, specificity, negative predictive
value, and positive predictive value were 62.5, 99.0, 50.0, and 99.4% for BD GeneOhmTM StaphSR and 62.5, 97.7, 31.3, and 99.4% for Cepheid XpertTM MRSA, respectively.
We conclude that MRSA rapid screening techniques must be interpreted cautiously in a low-prevalence population, as the sensitivity
is lower than in selected high-risk populations. MRSA carriers detected with molecular techniques must be confirmed by conventional
culture methods for follow-up. The specificity and negative predictive value indicate that molecular rapid methods are worthwhile
to be considered in MRSA-preventive strategies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Despite ongoing targeted surveillance efforts, no overall in-hospital prevalence data for hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) have been published for Belgium. Sixty-three Belgian acute hospitals participated in a point-prevalence study among either all patients admitted in their institution or 50% of the patients in each ward. HAIs were registered bed-site at a single day per ward during the period October-November 2007. The diagnosis was made according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria implemented in a custom-made rule-based software expert system available on a portable computer. The total number of patients surveyed nationally was 17 343, from 543 distinct hospital wards. The overall prevalence of HAIs was 7.1% (95% confidence interval: 6.7-7.4%); 6.2% (5.9-6.5%) of the patients suffered from at least one HAI. Prevalence of HAIs on adult intensive care was 31.3%. The major proportion of HAIs was observed among patients admitted on non-intensive care unit (non-ICU) wards, mainly on the wards of internal medicine, surgery, geriatrics and rehabilitation. Urinary tract infections were the most common type of HAI at geriatric and rehabilitation wards. This study demonstrates that the use of a portable computer system with a designated expert system for diagnosing HAIs according to the CDC criteria in a large point prevalence study is feasible and may reduce the within-subject variation. In Belgium, the prevalence of HAIs in acute hospitals thus identified is similar to that of neighbouring countries. As more than 80% of all HAIs occur on non-ICU wards, preventive efforts need to extend beyond the ICU.
Full-text · Article · Apr 2010 · The Journal of hospital infection
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: As the prompt detection of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) carriers upon admission is fundamental in the MRSA prevention strategy of our hospital, the infection control team is eagerly seeking the most sensitive and rapid screening method. The aim of this study was to compare the performance of two molecular techniques with a conventional MRSA-selective culture test (Bio-Rad chromogenic MRSASelect) in order to elucidate the suitability of the assays specifically in an expected low MRSA prevalence population.
The anterior nares and throat of 500 patients and visitors attending the emergency department of Sint-Jan General Hospital between May and June 2007 were sampled, and MRSA carriage was determined by selective culture after enrichment and the BD GeneOhm StaphSR and the Cepheid Xpert MRSA assays.
Eight MRSA carriers were detected by selective culture (1.6% prevalence). The sensitivity, specificity, positive [corrected] predictive value, and negative [corrected] predictive value were 62.5, 99.0, 50.0, and 99.4% for BD GeneOhm StaphSR and 62.5, 97.7, 31.3, and 99.4% for Cepheid Xpert MRSA, respectively.
We conclude that MRSA rapid screening techniques must be interpreted cautiously in a low-prevalence population, as the sensitivity is lower than in selected high-risk populations. MRSA carriers detected with molecular techniques must be confirmed by conventional culture methods for follow-up. The specificity and negative predictive value indicate that molecular rapid methods are worthwhile to be considered in MRSA-preventive strategies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of the study was to evaluate the antibiotic resistance in noninvasive clinical isolates of Streptococcus pneumoniae collected in Belgium during winter 2008-2007.
Four hundred and forty eight unduplicated isolates collected by 15 laboratories were tested by microdilution following CLSI.
Insusceptibility rates (I+R) were as follows: penicillin G (PEN) 11.6% (4.0% R), ampicillin 11.4% (4.0% R), amoxicillin+/-clavulanic acid 0, cefaclor 10.3% (9.6% R), cefuroxime 9.2% (8.7% R), cefuroxime-axetil 8.7% (7.8% R), cefotaxime, ceftazidime and cefepime 2.0% (0% R), imipenem 2.5% (0% R), ciprofloxacin and ofloxacin 5.1% (0.4% R), levofloxacin 0.7% (0.4% R), moxifloxacin 0.4% (0.2% R), erythromycin (ERY) 29.7% (29.2% R), azithromycin 29.7% (28.8% R), telithromycin 0%, clindamycin 26.3% (25.4% R) and tetracycline (TET) 21.9% (16.5% R). From 2001 to 2008, a significant decrease in penicillin-insusceptibility (21.0% to 11.6%), penicillin-resistance (9.7% to 4.0%) and ciprofloxacin-insusceptibility (11.2% to 5.1%) was found. Cross-resistance between penicillin and other betalactams in penicillin-insusceptible isolates was incomplete: all these isolates remained fully susceptible to amoxicillin. Erythromycin-insusceptibility was significantly higher in children than in adults (43.9%/27.4%), while penicillin-insusceptibility significantly higher in Brussels than in the Flanders (22.9%/8.1%). The commonest resistance phenotype was ERY-TET (12.7%) followed by ERY (7.4%) and PEN-ERY-TET (5.8%). Capsular types 19 (25%), 14 (19.3%), 23 (15.4%) and 15 (13.5%) were the most important in penicillin-insusceptible.
We noted a decrease in resistance to the majority of the compounds. Insusceptibility rates were higher in children than in adults and the difference between the north and the south of Belgium became less marked.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2009 · Pathologie Biologie
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We assessed methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in persons on 49 swine farms in Belgium. Surveys showed that 48 (37.8%) persons carried MRSA ST398 and 1 (0.8%) had concurrent skin infection. Risk factors for carriage were MRSA carriage by pigs, regular contact with pigs and companion animals, and use of protective clothing.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2009 · Emerging Infectious Diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a rare cause of community acquired soft tissue infection in Europe. We report a case of severe soft tissue infection caused by a MRSA strain originating from a pig bite.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A Belgian Antibiotic Policy Coordination Committee (BAPCOC) was officially established in 1999 by Royal Decree. The overall objective of BAPCOC is to promote judicious use of antibiotics in humans and animals and to promote infection control and hospital hygiene, with the overall aim to reduce antibiotic resistance. BAPCOC fostered strong and interdisciplinary public health, scientific and political leadership, which led to many evidence-based interventions such as multimedia campaigns to promote the prudent use of antibiotics in the community, national campaigns to promote hand hygiene in hospitals, publication of clinical practice guidelines, staffing and technical support for establishment of antibiotic management teams in all Belgian hospitals, surveillance programmes on antibiotic use and resistance in humans and animals and the promotion of research. These activities and interventions resulted in a measurable decrease in antibiotic use and resistance in the community and hospitals.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2008 · Eurosurveillance: bulletin europeen sur les maladies transmissibles = European communicable disease bulletin
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background: Detection and containment of MRSA carriers is essential in preventing the dissemination of MRSA in the hospital. Sensitive and specific rapid molecular MRSA-screening techniques compared to classical MRSA culture techniques may decrease the financial and medical burden of preventive isolation of patients at risk for MRSA upon hospital admission. We studied the performance of a commercial PCR method for detection of MRSA carriage among all patients at risk upon their hospital admission during one year. Methods: Between the 1st of July 2007 and the 30th of June 2008, 4546 patients admitted to the hospital presenting risk factors for MRSA colonisation were screened the same day for MRSA with a paired swab at the nares and throat, using both the molecular assay and MRSA enrichment and culture on chromogenic agar. Results: In a one-year period, 109 patients out of 4546 screened were detected as MRSA carriers (2.4 %). The molecular assay yielded a valid result in 4,201 samples (92.4 %). Compared to culture, sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value of the molecular assay were 82.0 %, 98.3 %, 60.6 % and 99.4 % respectively. From the 345 samples with an invalid result (7.6 %), an additional 6 MRSA carriers were detected with culture (0.13 %).
Rapid Molecular MRSA assay +
Rapid Molecular MRSA assay -
Conclusions: 1. The high specificity and the high negative predictive value indicate the role of the rapid molecular assay in MRSA preventive strategies. 2. Suboptimal positive predictive value of the PCR technique applied in a low MRSA-prevalence population indicates that MRSA carriership demonstrated with the rapid assay should be confirmed with culture. 3. Invalid results appeared in 7.6 % of samples and may complicate the decision about preventive isolation of high risk patients during the first 72 hours of hospital stay.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Costs related to a search and destroy policy and treatment for Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia in the University Hospital Maastricht were calculated for the period 2000 and 2004. The financial cost-benefit break-even point of the search and destroy policy was determined by modelling. On average 22,412 patients were admitted per year for an average of 8.7 days. Each year 246 patients were screened for meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and 74 patients were decolonised and nursed in preventive isolation. The prevalence of MRSA in the University Hospital Maastricht was 0.7%, as calculated from positive blood cultures, and mean length of stay for all patients with S. aureus bloodstream infections was 39.9 days. The annual cost of pro-active searching for MRSA in the University Hospital Maastricht was euro 1,383,200, and euro 2,736,762 for MRSA prevention and treatment of S. aureus bloodstream infections. Simulation of a variety MRSA/meticillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) ratios showed that even if the MRSA prevalence reaches 8%, prevention costs are still lower than the cost of treating S. aureus infections. In conclusion, the total cost of a search and destroy policy is lower than the cost of treating S. aureus bloodstream infections in the University Hospital Maastricht. At an MRSA prevalence of <or=8% the search and destroy policy remains cost-effective. From an economic point of view, the search and destroy policy is the best alternative at maintaining an endemic MRSA level at <1%.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipient developed a mucosal herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1) infection while under acyclovir (ACV) treatment (HSV was later shown to be resistant to ACV). Concomitantly, the patient presented a hemorrhagic cystitis (HC) due to polyomavirus BK, for which intravenous cidofovir (CDV) was prescribed. The patient benefited from the broad-spectrum anti-DNA virus activity of CDV, and not only the HC resolved without signs of nephrotoxicity but also the HSV-1 lesions disappeared. This is the first report describing the effect of CDV on 2 simultaneous and unrelated DNA viral infections in an immunosuppressed transplant recipient. In addition, we describe here that this HSV-1 isolate possesses a unique phenotype and genotype.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To collect recent data on the susceptibility of anaerobes and to compare them with results from previous studies.
Four hundred and forty-three anaerobic clinical isolates from various body sites were prospectively collected from October 2003 to February 2005 in nine Belgian hospitals. MICs were determined for nine anti-anaerobic and three recently developed antibiotics.
Most gram-negative bacilli except Fusobacterium spp. were resistant to penicillin. Piperacillin/tazobactam, metronidazole, chloramphenicol, meropenem and amoxicillin/clavulanic acid were very active against all groups, but only 86% of Bacteroides fragilis group strains were susceptible to the latter. Cefoxitin, cefotetan and clindamycin were less active. In particular, only 62%, 52% and 48% of B. fragilis group strains were susceptible, respectively. Clindamycin shows a continuing decrease in activity, as 83% were still susceptible in 1987 and 66% in 1993-94. Anti-anaerobic activity of the new antibiotics is interesting, with MIC50 and MIC90 of 1 and >32 mg/L for moxifloxacin, 2 and 4 mg/L for linezolid and 0.5 and 8 mg/L for tigecycline.
The susceptibility of anaerobic bacteria remains stable in Belgium, except for clindamycin, which shows a continuous decrease in activity. However, for each of the tested antibiotics, at least a few resistant organisms were detected. Consequently, for severe infections involving anaerobic bacteria, it could be advisable to perform microbiological testing instead of relying on known susceptibility profiles. Periodically monitoring background susceptibility remains necessary to guide empirical therapy.
Full-text · Article · Jan 2007 · Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy