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Shao-Lun Hsu, Chin-Ting Wu, Yuan-Chen Chang, Chia-Kwung Fan, Yuarn-Jang Lee
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-4; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06703-6

Abstract:
Background Actinomyces odontolyticus is not commonly recognized as a causative microbe of liver abscess. The detection and identification of A. odontolyticus in laboratories and its recognition as a pathogen in clinical settings can be challenging. However, in the past decades, knowledge on the clinical relevance of A. odontolyticus is gradually increasing. A. odontolyticus is the dominant oropharyngeal flora observed during infancy [Li et al. in Biomed Res Int 2018:3820215, 2018]. Herein we report a case of severe infection caused by A. odontolyticus in an immunocompromised patient with disruption of the gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa. Case presentation We present a unique case of a patient with human immunodeficiency virus infection who was admitted due to liver abscess and was subsequently diagnosed as having coinfection of A. odontolyticus, Streptococcus constellatus, and Candida albicans during the hospital course. The empirical antibiotics metronidazole and ceftriaxone were replaced with the intravenous administration of fluconazole and ampicillin. However, the patient’s condition deteriorated, and he died 3 weeks later. Conclusion This report is one of the first to highlight GI tract perforation and its clinical relevance with A. odontolyticus infection. A. odontolyticus infection should be diagnosed early in high-risk patients, and increased attention should be paid to commensal flora infection in immunocompromised individuals.
Santa García-Cisneros, Antonia Herrera-Ortiz, Maria Olamendi-Portugal,
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06680-w

Abstract:
Background Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection that is re-emerging in different parts of the world. This infection can be transmitted during pregnancy, causing neonatal syphilis. The objective of this study was to examine trend in syphilis, congenital syphilis, and neonatal deaths among the Mexican population during 2010–2019. Methods An ecological study was carried out to collect information about the incidence of syphilis, the incidence of congenital syphilis, and the incidence of neonatal death from congenital syphilis. The variables were described considering age, sex, Mexican state, and year. Trends across time (calendar year) were analyzed using linear regression, increases were estimated with 95% confidence intervals, and p < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results The incidence of syphilis increased by an average of 0.336 cases/100,000 per year and was higher among women aged 15–19 years (0.693 cases). Cases of congenital syphilis increased from 62 cases in 2010 to 372 cases in 2019; furthermore, the increase in syphilis cases among women aged 20 to 24 years was associated with an increase in cases of congenital syphilis. In 2010, 50% of Mexican states did not report cases of congenital syphilis, but in 2018, only 10% did not report cases of congenital syphilis. Between 2010 and 2018, 83 neonatal deaths were reported, with the highest incidence in 2018 (0.88 deaths/100,000 newborns). Conclusion The incidence of congenital syphilis is increasing in Mexico. As a consequence of the reemergence of syphilis among the population of reproductive age, it is necessary to address and treat syphilis in various population groups.
Ammar Awad, Adnan Alnaser, Hozifa Abd-Elmaged, Reyad Abdallah, Hussam S. Khougali
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-4; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06695-3

Abstract:
Background Mycetoma is the most common neglected disease in humans. It is a chronic, progressive, and destructive disease primarily caused by fungi or bacteria characterized by formation of dark pale grains commonly involve skin, soft tissue and rarely bone. Case presentation A 19 year old male patient with chronic right ankle pain, swelling and abscess formation for more than 1 year, patient was treated repeatedly with incision and drainage without any success. No X-ray, biopsy or swab for culture and sensitivity had been considered through the course of presentation. Patient was referred to Omdurman hospital where osteomyelitis secondary euomycetoma infection has been confirmed based on radiological and pathological assessment. Patient was treated surgically with aggressive debridement and bone curettage plus postoperative Itraconazole for 1 year. Conclusion Clinicians must consider osteomyelitis as important differential diagnosis during initial assessment Eumycetoma infection in adults. Aggressive bone curettage followed by regular X-ray follow up can be limb saving procedure in such cases.
, Ken Goda, Ayako Kumabe
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-5; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06692-6

Abstract:
Background Meningitis retention syndrome (MRS) is a rare condition that presents with acute urinary retention as a complication of aseptic meningitis. Cases of MRS due to varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection without a rash are rare. We report the case of a patient who had no signs of meningitis or VZV infection, including a rash. Case presentation A 58-year-old man presented with dysesthesia of the lower limbs and acute urinary retention. He had fever but no rash and no signs of meningitis. He was diagnosed to have VZV infection based on the detection of VZV DNA in the cerebrospinal fluid. He responded satisfactorily to a course of intravenous acyclovir and experienced no sequelae during a 2-year follow-up period. Conclusion MRS due to aseptic meningitis of viral origin should be considered in the differential diagnosis of acute urinary retention even in the absence of specific signs and symptoms of meningitis or a suggestive rash.
, Takao Itoi, Takeshi Inoue
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-4; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06683-7

Abstract:
Background Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has a broad spectrum from respiratory and nasopharyngeal symptoms, cerebrovascular diseases, impaired consciousness, and skeletal muscle injury. Emerging evidence has indicated the neural spread of this novel coronavirus. Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a common neurological, sensorimotor disorder, but highly under diagnosis disorder. Restless anal syndrome as restless legs syndrome variant associated with COVID-19 has been previously not published. We report a case presenting with restless anal syndrome following COVID-19. Case presentation Although a 77-year-old male with COVID-19 improved to normal respiratory function 21 days after admission and treatment of favipiravir 200 mg per day for 14 days and dexamethasone 6.6 mg per day for 5 days, the insomnia and anxiety symptoms remained. Several weeks after discharge, he gradually began to experience restless, deep anal discomfort, approximately 10 cm from the perineal region. The following features were observed in the anal region; urge to move is essential, with worsening with rest, improvement with exercise, and worsening at evening. Colonoscopy revealed internal haemorrhoids without other rectal lesions. Neurological findings including deep tendon reflex, perineum loss of sensory and spinal cord injury, revealed no abnormalities. Diabetes militias, kidney dysfunction and iron deficiency status were not confirmed. Family history of RLS and periodic limb movements were not observed. Clonazepam at 1.5 mg per day resulted in the alleviation restless anal discomfort. Conclusions We reported a case presenting with restless anal syndrome following affection of COVID-19 as restless legs syndrome variant. This case fulfilled 4 essential features of RLS, urge to move, worsening with rest, improvement with exercise, and worsening at evening. To date, no case of restless anal syndrome associated with COVID-19 has been previously published. This case report may reflect the associative impacts of COVID-19 on the neuropsychiatric state. The long-term outcomes of neuropsychiatric conditions should continue to be monitored.
, Alexandra Greser, , Viktoria Rücker, Andy Maun, Jutta Bleidorn, Christoph Heintze, Felix Jede, Tim Eckmanns, Anja Klingeberg, et al.
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06660-0

Abstract:
Background Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a common cause of prescribing antibiotics in family medicine. In Germany, about 40% of UTI-related prescriptions are second-line antibiotics, which contributes to emerging resistance rates. To achieve a change in the prescribing behaviour among family physicians (FPs), this trial aims to implement the guideline recommendations in German family medicine. Methods/design In a randomized controlled trial, a multimodal intervention will be developed and tested in family practices in four regions across Germany. The intervention will consist of three elements: information on guideline recommendations, information on regional resistance and feedback of prescribing behaviour for FPs on a quarterly basis. The effect of the intervention will be compared to usual practice. The primary endpoint is the absolute difference in the mean of prescribing rates of second-line antibiotics among the intervention and the control group after 12 months. To detect a 10% absolute difference in the prescribing rate after one year, with a significance level of 5% and a power of 86%, a sample size of 57 practices per group will be needed. Assuming a dropout rate of 10%, an overall number of 128 practices will be required. The accompanying process evaluation will provide information on feasibility and acceptance of the intervention. Discussion If proven effective and feasible, the components of the intervention can improve adherence to antibiotic prescribing guidelines and contribute to antimicrobial stewardship in ambulatory care. Trial registration DRKS, DRKS00020389, Registered 30 January 2020, https://www.drks.de/drks_web/navigate.do?navigationId=trial.HTML&TRIAL_ID=DRKS00020389.
Tomoaki Nakamura, Kazuhiro Ishikawa, Takahiro Matsuo, Fujimi Kawai, Yuki Uehara, Nobuyoshi Mori
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06707-2

Abstract:
Background Infections caused by Enterococcus hirae are common in animals, with instances of transmission to humans being rare. Further, few cases have been reported in humans because of the difficulty in identifying the bacteria. Herein, we report a case of pyelonephritis caused by E. hirae bacteremia and conduct a literature review on E. hirae bacteremia. Case presentation A 57-year-old male patient with alcoholic cirrhosis and neurogenic bladder presented with fever and chills that had persisted for 3 days. Physical examination revealed tenderness of the right costovertebral angle. Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) of the patient’s blood and urine samples revealed the presence of E. hirae, and pyelonephritis was diagnosed. The patient was treated successfully with intravenous ampicillin followed by oral linezolid for a total of three weeks. Conclusion The literature review we conducted revealed that E. hirae bacteremia is frequently reported in urinary tract infections, biliary tract infections, and infective endocarditis and is more likely to occur in patients with diabetes, liver cirrhosis, and chronic kidney disease. However, mortality is not common because of the high antimicrobial susceptibility of E. hirae. With the advancements in MALDI-TOF MS, the number of reports of E. hirae infections has also increased, and clinicians need to consider E. hirae as a possible causative pathogen of urinary tract infections in patients with known risk factors.
Xiaobin Zao, Yang Zhou, Yijun Liang, Xu Cao, Hening Chen, Xiaoke Li, Yong’An Ye
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-5; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06679-3

Abstract:
Background The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has become a global pandemic. There have been reports that long-term SARS-CoV-2 RNA shedding and re-infection of COVID-19 patients existed. However, the specific mechanism, diagnosis, and treatment of COVID-19 are still unclarified. Case presentation In this case, we reported a 64-year-old patient who had a long-term course of COVID-19 for 174 days with two retests of SARS-CoV-2 RNA positive after discharging from the hospital. The patient’s serum immunoglobulin G (IgG) of SARS-CoV-2 tested positive after the initial infection. And during treatment, the CD4 + T cell count and ratio to peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) were in dynamic change. Conclusions Our results suggested that the host immune system responded with IgG production after SARS-CoV-2 infection, but was not protective enough for the patient. The reemergence of SARS-CoV-2 could be related to the cell count and proportion of CD4 + T cells in PBMC. And the increase of CD4 + T cells after treatment may help to clear the virus.
Yu-Mi Lee, Tark Kim, Ki-Ho Park, , Yee Gyung Kwak, Eun Ju Choo, Jin-Won Chung, Mi Suk Lee
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-7; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06699-z

Abstract:
Background Nonrandom multiple respiratory virus (RV) detection provides evidence for viral interference among respiratory viruses. However, little is known as to whether it occurs randomly. Methods The prevalence of dual RV detection (DRVD) in patients with acute respiratory illnesses (ARIs) at 4 academic medical centers was investigated; data about the prevalence of 8 RVs were collected from the Korean national RV surveillance dataset. Linear regression analysis was performed to assess the correlation between observed and estimated prevalence of each type of DRVD. Results In total, 108 patients with ARIs showing DRVD were included in this study between 2011 and 2017. In several types of regression analysis, a strong correlation was observed between the observed and estimated prevalence of each type of DRVD. Excluding three DRVD types (influenza/picornavirus, influenza/human metapneumovirus, and adenovirus/respiratory syncytial virus), the slope of the regression line was higher than that of the line of random occurrence (1.231 > 1.000) and the 95% confidence interval of the regression line was located above the line of random occurrence. Conclusions Contrary to the results of previous epidemiologic studies, most types of DRVD occur more frequently than expected from the prevalence rates of individual RV, except for three underrepresented pairs above.
Stefania Paolucci, Giulia Campanini, Irene Cassaniti, Alessandra Tebaldi, Federica Novazzi, Alice Fratini, Antonella Meini, Federica Girelli, Laura Palumbo, Alessandro Plebani, et al.
Published: 23 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-5; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06694-4

Abstract:
Background Human Cytomegalovirus (HCMV) still represents a crucial concern in solid organ transplant recipients (SOTRs) and the use of antiviral therapy are limited by side effects and the selection of viral mutations conferring antiviral drug resistance. Case presentation Here we reported the case of an HCMV seronegative patient with common variable immunodeficiency (CVID), multiple hepatic adenomatosis, hepatopulmonary syndrome and portal hypertension who received a liver transplant from an HCMV seropositive donor. The patient was treated with Valganciclovir (vGCV) and then IV Ganciclovir (GCV) at 5 week post-transplant for uncontrolled HCMV DNAemia. However, since mutation A594V in UL97 gene conferring resistance to ganciclovir was reported, GCV therapy was interrupted. Due to the high toxicity of Foscarnet (FOS) and Cidofovir (CDV), Letermovir (LMV) monotherapy at the dosage of 480 mg per day was administered, with a gradual viral load reduction. However, a relapse of HCMV DNAemia revealed the presence of mutation C325Y in HCMV UL56 gene conferring resistance to LMV. Conclusions In conclusion, even if LMV is an effective and favorable safety molecule it might have a lower genetic barrier to resistance. A warning on the use of LMV monotherapy as rescue treatments for HCMV GCV-resistant infections in transplant recipients is warranted.
Masoud Keikha, Mohsen Karbalaei
Published: 22 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06708-1

Abstract:
Background Tuberculosis (TB) is one of the most contagious infectious diseases worldwide. Currently, drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) isolates are considered as one of the main challenges in the global TB control strategy. Rapid detection of resistant strains effectively reduces morbidity and mortality of world’s population. Although both culture and conventional antibiotic susceptibility testing are time-consuming, recent studies have shown that high resolution melting (HRM) assay can be used to determine the types of antibiotic resistance. In the present meta-analysis, we evaluated the discriminative power of HRM in detecting all drug-resistance cases of TB. Methods A systematic search was performed using databases such as Cochrane Library, Scopus, PubMed, Web of Science, and Google Scholar. Related studies on the effect of HRM in the diagnosis of drug-resistant (DR) TB cases were retrieved by April 2021. We used Meta-Disc software to evaluate the pooled diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of HRM for the detection of each type of drug-resistant cases. Finally, diagnostic value of HRM was characterized by summary receiver operating characteristic (SROC) curve and the area under the curve (AUC) method. Results Overall 47 studies (4,732 Mtb isolates) met our criteria and were included in the present meta-analysis. Sensitivity, specificity, and AUC of HRM were measured for antibiotics such as isoniazid (93%, 98%, 0.987), rifampin (94%, 97%, 0963), ethambutol (82%, 87%, 0.728), streptomycin (82%, 95%, 0.957), pyrazinamide (72%, 84%, 0.845), fluoroquinolones (86%, 99%, 0.997), MDR-TB (90%, 98%, 0.989), and pan-drug-resistant TB (89%, 95%, 0.973). Conclusions The HRM assay has high accuracy for the identification of drug-resistant TB, particularly firs-line anti-TB drugs. Therefore, this method is considered as an alternative option for the rapid diagnosis of DR-TB cases. However, due to heterogeneity of included studies, the results of HRM assays should be interpreted based on conventional drug susceptibility testing.
Fachun Jiang, Tao Wei, Xiaowen Hu, Yalin Han, Jing Jia, Bei Pan, Wei Ni
Published: 21 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06674-8

Abstract:
Background We conducted a distributed lag non-linear time series analysis to quantify the association between air pollution and scarlet fever in Qingdao city during 2014–2018. Methods A distributed lag non-linear model (DLNM) combined with a generalized additive mixed model (GAMM) was applied to quantify the distributed lag effects of air pollutions on scarlet fever, with daily incidence of scarlet fever as the dependent variable and air pollutions as the independent variable adjusted for potential confounders. Results A total of 6316 cases of scarlet fever were notified, and there were 376 days occurring air pollution during the study period. Scarlet fever was significantly associated with air pollutions at a lag of 7 days with different relative risk (RR) of air pollution degrees [1.172, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.038–1.323 in mild air pollution; 1.374, 95% CI 1.078–1.749 in moderate air pollution; 1.610, 95% CI 1.163–2.314 in severe air pollution; 1.887, 95% CI 1.163–3.061 in most severe air pollution]. Conclusions Our findings show that air pollution is positively associated with scarlet fever in Qingdao, and the risk of scarlet fever could be increased along with the degrees of air pollution. It contributes to developing strategies to prevent and reduce health impact from scarlet fever and other non-vaccine-preventable respiratory infectious diseases in air polluted areas.
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, Ashleigh C. Myall, Bernard Hernandez, Andrea Y. Weiße, Robert L. Peach, Mauricio Barahona, Timothy M. Rawson, Alison H. Holmes
Published: 21 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-1; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06696-2

Gideon Loevinsohn, Mutinta Hamahuwa, Pamela Sinywimaanzi, Katherine Z. J. Fenstermacher, Kathryn Shaw-Saliba, Andrew Pekosz, Mwaka Monze, Richard E. Rothman, Edgar Simulundu, Philip E. Thuma, et al.
Published: 21 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-15; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06677-5

Abstract:
Background While southern Africa experiences among the highest mortality rates from respiratory infections, the burden of influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in rural areas is poorly understood. Methods We implemented facility-based surveillance in Macha, Zambia. Outpatients and inpatients presenting with influenza-like illness (ILI) underwent testing for influenza A, influenza B, and RSV and were prospectively followed for 3 to 5 weeks to assess clinical course. Log-binomial models assessed correlates of infection and clinical severity. Results Between December 2018 and December 2019, 17% of all outpatients presented with ILI and 16% of inpatients were admitted with an acute respiratory complaint. Influenza viruses and RSV were detected in 17% and 11% of outpatient participants with ILI, and 23% and 16% of inpatient participants with ILI, respectively. Influenza (July–September) and RSV (January-April) prevalence peaks were temporally distinct. RSV (relative risk [RR]: 1.78; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.51–2.11), but not influenza, infection was associated with severe disease among patients with ILI. Underweight patients with ILI were more likely to be infected with influenza A (prevalence ratio [PR]: 1.72; 95% CI 1.04–2.87) and to have severe influenza A infections (RR: 2.49; 95% CI 1.57–3.93). Conclusions Populations in rural Zambia bear a sizeable burden of viral respiratory infections and severe disease. The epidemiology of infections in this rural area differs from that reported from urban areas in Zambia.
Ying-Wen Wang, Wei-Ping Lee, Yi-Hsiang Huang, Ming-Chih Hou, Keng-Hsin Lan
Published: 21 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-12; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06657-9

Abstract:
Background Previous studies reported worsened lipid profiles in patients infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) during direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) treatment. This study aimed to investigate the effect of sofosbuvir (SOF)-based DAAs on changes in low-density lipoprotein (LDL) in HCV patients. Methods A systematic review of articles published before 31 May 2021 was conducted by searching MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, EMBASE, and CINAHL Plus. Eligible studies were those comparing SOF-based DAAs and non-SOF DAAs for HCV patients and providing numerical data for changes in LDL. Risk of Bias in Non-randomized Studies- of Interventions was used for assessing risk of bias, and meta-analysis was performed for changes in LDL. Results Six studies comprising 1248 patients were included, 848 patients treated with SOF-based DAAs and 400 patients with non-SOF DAAs vs. SOF-based DAAs group had significantly greater increases in LDL from baseline to week 4 than non-SOF DAAs group (P = 0.001). However, changes in LDL from baseline to the end of treatment (P = 0.060), to post-treatment week 12 (P = 0.263), and to post-treatment week 24 (P = 0.319) did not significantly differ between the two groups. Further comparison of SOF/ledipasvir with asunaprevir/daclatasvir revealed a similar trend in changes in LDL. Conclusions For HCV patients, SOF-based DAA regimens were associated with rapid and significant increases in LDL during the initial 4 weeks of treatment, and the changes did not sustain after the end of treatment. Potential mechanism might be related to the phosphoramidate side chain of SOF.
Akane Ono, Kensuke Aoyagi, Yuichi Muraki, Yusuke Asai, Shinya Tsuzuki, Ryuji Koizumi, Toshiaki Azuma, Yoshiki Kusama, Norio Ohmagari
Published: 21 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06688-2

Abstract:
Background The inappropriate use of antimicrobials for acute infectious diarrhea is widespread and leads to the problem of antimicrobial resistance. To improve the use of antimicrobials, it is first necessary to understand the actual situation of diarrheal disease and to identify potential targets for intervention. This study aimed to investigate the recent epidemiological characteristics of and antimicrobial prescriptions for acute infectious diarrhea in Japan. Methods This was a retrospective observational study of outpatients aged 0–65 years, separated into children (age 0–17 years) and adults (age 18–65 years), diagnosed with acute infectious diarrhea, using the administrative claims database of the Japan Medical Data Center from 2013 to 2018. We evaluated the number of eligible visits/number of database registrants (defined as the visit rate). The analysis of the antimicrobial prescription rate was restricted to otherwise healthy individuals diagnosed with acute infectious diarrhea alone by excluding patients with multiple disease diagnoses and with medical backgrounds of chronic bowel diseases or immunocompromised conditions. We further classified them by diagnosis of bacterial or nonbacterial acute infectious diarrhea. Results The total number of eligible visits for acute infectious diarrhea was 2,600,065. The visit rate, calculated based on the number of eligible visits by database registrants, was higher in children (boys, 0.264; girls, 0.229) than in adults (men, 0.070; women, 0.079), with peaks in early summer and winter. The peaks for visits in adults lagged those of children. In total, 482,484 visits were analyzed to determine the antimicrobial prescription rate; 456,655 (94.6%) were diagnosed with nonbacterial acute infectious diarrhea. Compared with children (boys, 0.305; girls, 0.304), the antimicrobial prescription rate was higher in adults, and there were differences between sexes in adults (men, 0.465; women, 0.408). Fosfomycin and fluoroquinolone were most frequently used for nonbacterial acute infectious diarrhea in children (44.1%) and adults (50.3%), respectively. Conclusions These results revealed overprescription of antimicrobials for acute infectious diarrhea in this administrative claims database in Japan and contribute to the development of antimicrobial stewardship strategies and the identification of targets for efficiently reducing inappropriate antimicrobial use.
Jenna R. Adalbert, Karan Varshney, Rachel Tobin, Rafael Pajaro
Published: 21 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-17; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06616-4

Abstract:
Background Endemic to the hospital environment, Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a leading bacterial pathogen that causes deadly infections such as bacteremia and endocarditis. In past viral pandemics, it has been the principal cause of secondary bacterial infections, significantly increasing patient mortality rates. Our world now combats the rapid spread of COVID-19, leading to a pandemic with a death toll greatly surpassing those of many past pandemics. However, the impact of co-infection with S. aureus remains unclear. Therefore, we aimed to perform a high-quality scoping review of the literature to synthesize the existing evidence on the clinical outcomes of COVID-19 and S. aureus co-infection. Methods A scoping review of the literature was conducted in PubMed, Scopus, Ovid MEDLINE, CINAHL, ScienceDirect, medRxiv, and the WHO COVID-19 database using a combination of terms. Articles that were in English, included patients infected with both COVID-19 and S. aureus, and provided a description of clinical outcomes for patients were eligible. From these articles, the following data were extracted: type of staphylococcal species, onset of co-infection, patient sex, age, symptoms, hospital interventions, and clinical outcomes. Quality assessments of final studies were also conducted using the Joanna Briggs Institute’s critical appraisal tools. Results Searches generated a total of 1922 publications, and 28 articles were eligible for the final analysis. Of the 115 co-infected patients, there were a total of 71 deaths (61.7%) and 41 discharges (35.7%), with 62 patients (53.9%) requiring ICU admission. Patients were infected with methicillin-sensitive and methicillin-resistant strains of S. aureus, with the majority (76.5%) acquiring co-infection with S. aureus following hospital admission for COVID-19. Aside from antibiotics, the most commonly reported hospital interventions were intubation with mechanical ventilation (74.8 %), central venous catheter (19.1 %), and corticosteroids (13.0 %). Conclusions Given the mortality rates reported thus far for patients co-infected with S. aureus and COVID-19, COVID-19 vaccination and outpatient treatment may be key initiatives for reducing hospital admission and S. aureus co-infection risk. Physician vigilance is recommended during COVID-19 interventions that may increase the risk of bacterial co-infection with pathogens, such as S. aureus, as the medical community’s understanding of these infection processes continues to evolve.
Sabina M. Govere, Sean Galagan, Boikhutso Tlou, Tivani Mashamba-Thompson, Ingrid V. Bassett, Paul K. Drain
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-7; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06689-1

Abstract:
Background South Africa has not achieved the 90–90–90 goals, in part due to low rates of antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation among those aware of their HIV status. Perceived risk of HIV at the time of testing may affect likelihood of rapid ART initiation. The purpose of this study was to evaluate factors associated with perceived risk of HIV and the relationship between perceived HIV risk and rapid ART initiation during the universal test and treat era which was adapted in October 2016. Methods We conducted a prospective study of adults undergoing HIV testing from October 2016–February 2019 at Ithembalabantu Clinic in Durban. Eligible participants reported not previously being diagnosed with HIV. Before HIV testing, participants were asked to assess their perceived HIV risk on a four-level scale. We categorized “definitely not” and “probably not going to acquire HIV” as a low perceived risk, and “probably will” and “definitely will become HIV-infected” as a high perceived risk of HIV infection. Participants were followed for up to 14 months following HIV testing to assess ART initiation. Results Among 1519 people newly diagnosed with HIV, 55% were female and mean age was 33 years. Among those, 1382 (90.9%) had a high HIV risk perception and 137 (9.1%) reported low HIV risk perception. In the low risk group individuals were more likely to be female (58% vs 55%), unemployed (62% vs 59%), have a partner with unknown HIV status (61% vs 55%) compared to the high risk group. 83.2% of those with low HIV risk perception reported previously HIV testing compared 91.5% of those with high HIV risk perception. In the multivariate model, males were associated with a higher chances of initiating ART compared to females (adjusted hazard ratio (aHR): 1.187, CI 1.187 (1.060–1.329) and being unemployed (aHR 0.767 CI (0.650–0.905). Those with a low HIV risk perception were less likely to initiate ART 125 (91%) vs 1310 (95%) p = 0.022), and took longer to initiate on ART after HIV diagnosis (11 days’ vs 4 days, p = 0.042). Conclusion Factors associated with high HIV risk perception included being unemployed, single, and having a partner of unknown HIV status. People living with HIV (PLHIV) in South Africa who had a low self-perceived risk to HIV infection were less likely to initiate ART. Assessing self-perceived risk of HIV infection may help direct counselling and improve ART initiation to achieve universal 90–90–90 goal.
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-12; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06686-4

Abstract:
Background Studies show men who have sex with men (MSM) practising receptive anal sex are more likely to present with secondary syphilis, suggesting anorectal primary lesions are being missed. Regular anal self-examination might be able to detect anorectal syphilis lesions, hence potentially reducing transmission. This study aimed to explore the attitudes of MSM on performing anal self-examination to detect primary syphilis. Methods In this qualitative study, 20 MSM over 18 years of age were purposively sampled from a sexual health clinic to participate in semi-structured interviews. Interviews were recorded, transcribed verbatim and data analysed thematically. Results Four major themes and 12 sub-themes were generated from the study: (1) reasons for performing anal self-examination, (2) preferred educational resources for anal self-examination, (3) attitudes towards partner anal examination, and (4) acceptability of anal self-examination. Most participants had performed some form of anal self-examination in the past, and, just over half performed regularly for mostly health-related concerns. Most participants who infrequently or never performed anal self-examination were agreeable to perform regularly if it was recommended by health professionals with appropriate guidance. Participants preferred education on anal self-examination from health professionals and trusted online learning resources. Conclusion Our study showed MSM were agreeable to anal self-examination however would like to receive education and training to gain more confidence in conducting anal self-examination as a screening tool. Further studies are required to explore the adherence and acceptability of anal self-examination for syphilis prior to studies examining efficacy. The study provides foundation for any future policy aiming at utilising anal self-examination as a screening tool for syphilis among MSM.
D. M. D. I. B. Dissanayake, W. M. S. N. Gunaratne, K. W. M. P. P. Kumarihamy, S. A. M. Kularatne, P. V. R. Kumarasiri
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06681-9

Abstract:
Background Dengue fever is a common mosquito borne viral infection. Severe dengue fever associated severe hepatitis carries high mortality. Based on the beneficial effect of N-acetylcysteine (NAC) in paracetamol poisoning and non-acetaminophen induced liver failure, it is used in dengue fever associated hepatitis in clinical practice. We aim to study the reversal of liver enzymes with NAC in the setting of severe hepatitis due to severe dengue infection. Methods A retrospective analysis was conducted on hospitalized 30 adults with severe dengue fever with severe hepatitis. These 30 patients had aspartate transaminase (AST) and alanine transaminases (ALT) more than 500 U/L and/or PT INR (prothrombin time and international normalized ratio) more than 1.5. They were treated with NAC infusion of 100 mg/h for 3 to 5 days. Results The mean age of the group was 49.9 ± 11.46 years and 18 (60%) patients were males. Nineteen patients (63%) developed dengue shock. Of them 12 patients (40%) developed hepatic encephalopathy. Median AST on the day of administration of NAC was 1125 U/L interquartile range (IQR) 1653.25 while median ALT was 752 (IQR 459.25). There was a statistically significant reduction of both ALT (p = 0.034) and AST (p = 0.049) from day 1 to 4 after NAC infusion. Rise of platelet count between day 1 and day 4 also showed statistically significant difference (p = 0.011) but the reduction of prothrombin time and international normalized ratio (PT/INR) from 1 to day 4 did not show statistical significance difference. Mean duration of treatment with NAC was 3.61 ± 0.75 days while mean length of hospital stay was 6.2 ± 1.27 days. Only one patient died (3.3%). None of the patients reported adverse drug reaction due to NAC. Conclusion Majority of patients demonstrated marked clinical and biochemical improvements and they recovered fully. We observed faster and significant recovery of liver enzymes following administration of NAC. Based on the above findings, this study provides preliminary evidence for the beneficial effect of NAC in severe hepatitis in dengue infection with greater survival benefits.
K. P. Jayawickreme, D. K. Jayaweera, S. Weerasinghe, D. Warapitiya, S. Subasinghe
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-14; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06685-5

Abstract:
Background The World Health Organization (WHO) has ranked dengue as one of the top ten threats to Global health in 2019. Sri Lanka faced a massive dengue epidemic in 2017, the largest outbreak in the country during the last three decades, consisting of 186,101 reported cases, and over 320 deaths. The epidemic was controlled by intense measures taken by the health sector. However, the reported dengue cases and dengue deaths in 2019 were significantly higher than that of 2018. Deaths were mostly due to delay in hospitalization of severe dengue patients. The mortality of dengue hemorrhagic fever is 2–5% if detected early and treated promptly, but is high as 20% if left untreated. Methods A descriptive cross-sectional study was done among patients with dengue fever presenting to the Sri Jayawardenepura General Hospital during October 2019. Data was collected using a questionnaire comprising 20 questions based on knowledge, attitudes and practices on dengue, which were categorized into questions on awareness of mortality and severity of dengue burden, prevention of dengue vector mosquito breeding and acquiring the infection, patient’s role in dengue management, and warning signs requiring prompt hospitalization. Results The mean KAP score on all questions was 55%, while a majority of 65.2% patients scored moderate KAP scores (50–75%) on all questions, and only 7.6% had high KAP scores (> 75%). The highest categorical mean score of 62% was on awareness of dengue prevention, followed by 54% on awareness of dengue burden, and only 51% on dengue management. Only 5.3% patients scored high scores on awareness of dengue management, followed by 28.5%, and 40.9% patients scoring high scores on awareness of dengue burden, and awareness of prevention of dengue respectively. The mean KAP scores on all questions increased with increasing age category. Conclusion The population relatively has a better awareness of dengue prevention, as compared to awareness of dengue mortality and dengue management. The identified weak point is patient awareness of the patients’ role in dengue management, and identifying warning signs requiring prompt hospitalization. This results in delay in treatment, which is a major cause for increased mortality. There was a correlation between those who had good knowledge on dengue burden and those who were aware of patients’ role in dengue management. An action plan should be implemented to improve public awareness through education programs on the role of the public and patients in dengue management to drive a better outcome.
Faridath Massou, Merlin Fandohan, Ablo Prudence Wachinou, Schadrac Christin Agbla, Gildas Agodokpessi, Leen Rigouts, Bouke Catherine de Jong, Dissou Affolabi
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-5; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06676-6

Abstract:
Background The diagnosis of tuberculosis (TB) using smear microscopy has been based on testing two specimens: one spot and one early morning sputa. Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended to replace, whenever possible, microscopy with GeneXpert® MTB/RIF performed on a single specimen. However, as the bacterial load is higher in early morning specimens than in spot specimens, one could expect lower sensitivity of GeneXpert® MTB/RIF performed only on spot specimens. In this study, we compared results of GeneXpert® MTB/RIF on spot specimens versus early morning specimens, under programmatic conditions in Cotonou, Benin. Methods From June to September 2018, all sputa received from presumptive TB patients at the Supranational Reference Laboratory for Tuberculosis of Cotonou were included in the study. From each patient, two specimens were collected (one spot and one early morning) and GeneXpert® MTB/RIF was performed on both specimens. Results In total, 886 participants were included in the study, of whom 737 provided both sputa and 149 (16.8%) gave only the spot specimen. For the 737 participants who provided both sputa, GeneXpert® MTB/RIF was positive for both specimens in 152 participants; for three participants GeneXpert® MTB/RIF was positive on spot specimen but negative on morning specimen while for another three, the test was positive on morning specimen but negative on spot specimen. The overall percentage of agreement was excellent (99.2%) with a positive and negative percent agreement greater than 98%. Conclusion For TB diagnosis under programmatic conditions in Cotonou, GeneXpert® MTB/RIF in spot specimens gave similar results with the test in morning specimens. Performing GeneXpert® MTB/RIF in both specimens did not significantly increase the number of cases detected. To avoid losing patients from the diagnostic cascade, it is preferable to test sputa produced at the time of the first visit at the health center.
Di Wu, Junjie Ding, Yan Jia, Huanmiao Liu, Jie Xiao, Jie Peng
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06709-0

Abstract:
Background Multidrug-resistant (MDR) Klebsiella pneumoniae infections, from pancreatic infections to bloodstream infections, influence the mortality of patients with acute pancreatitis (AP) on the condition of limited antibiotic choices. The aim of this study was to investigate the predictor of mortality among AP patients complicated with MDR-K. pneumoniae infections. Methods Seventy-one AP patients who occurred MDR-K. pneumoniae infections from August 1st, 2016 to August 1st, 2020 were enrolled. MDR-K. pneumoniae was defined as the K. pneumoniae strain non-susceptible to at least one agent in three or more antimicrobial categories. MDR-K. pneumoniae isolates were confirmed by Vitek-2 system. Antibiotic susceptibility test was carried out using a micro broth dilution method. Clinical characteristics and drug-resistance rates were retrospectively reviewed, and the predictors of mortality were evaluated by univariate and multivariate analyses. Results The mortality rate of AP patients complicated with MDR-K. pneumoniae infections reached 46.5% (33 of 71), and pancreas (n = 53) was the most common site of MDR-K pneumoniae strains. The drug resistance rates of MDR-K. pneumoniae were high to 11 of 12 common antibiotics (more than 50.0%) except of tigecycline (23.9%). The predictor independently associated with mortality was septic shock (hazard ratio 2.959, 95% confidence intervals 1.396 – 6.272, P = 0.005). Conclusions More attention should be paid for pancreatic MDR-K. pneumoniae infections among AP patients The predictor for mortality of AP patients complicated with MDR-K. pneumoniae infection is septic shock. Therefore, further clinical investigations should focus on areas against septic shock.
, Joshua Kyenkya, Irene Bagaya, Sylvia Nabukenya, Nelson Ssewankambo, Damalie Nakanjako, Agnes N. Kiragga
Published: 20 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06684-6

Abstract:
Background Retention of pregnant and breastfeeding women and their infants in HIV care still remains low in Uganda. Recent literature has shown that the effects of COVID-19 mitigation measures may increase disease burden of common illnesses including HIV, Tuberculosis, Malaria and other key public health outcomes such as maternal mortality. A research program was undertaken to locate disengaged HIV positive women on option B+ and supported them to reengage in care. A 1 year follow up done following the tracing revealed that some women still disengaged from care. We aimed to establish the barriers to and facilitators for reengagement in care among previously traced women on option B+, and how these could have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods This was a cross sectional qualitative study using individual interviews conducted in June and July, 2020, a period when the COVID-19 response measures such as lockdown and restrictions on transport were being observed in Uganda. Study participants were drawn from nine peri-urban and rural public healthcare facilities. Purposive sampling was used to select women still engaged in and those who disengaged from care approximately after 1 year since they were last contacted. Seventeen participants were included. Data was analysed using the content analysis approach. Results Women reported various barriers that affected their reengagement and retention in care during the COVID-19 pandemic. These included structural barriers such as transport difficulties and financial constraints; clinical barriers which included unsupportive healthcare workers, short supply of drugs, clinic delays, lack of privacy and medicine side effects; and psychosocial barriers such as perceived or experienced stigma and non-disclosure of HIV sero-status. Supportive structures such as family, community-based medicine distribution models, and a friendly healthcare environment were key facilitators to retention in care among this group. The COVID-19 pandemic was reported to exacerbate the barriers to retention in care. Conclusions COVID-19 may exacerbate barriers to retention in HIV care among those who have experienced previous disengagement. We recommend community-based models such as drop out centres, peer facilitated distribution and community outreaches as alternative measures for access to ART during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Michael U. Anyanwu
Published: 19 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-6; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06701-8

Abstract:
Background The number of persons infected with COVID-19 continues to increase with deaths reported daily across the globe. High income countries such as the US, the UK, Italy and Belgium have reported high COVID-19 related deaths but low-and-middle-income countries have recorded fewer deaths despite having poor healthcare system. This study aimed to investigate the association between malaria prevalence and COVID-19 mortality. Methods An ecological study was conducted with data from 195 countries. Spearman’s correlation was used to test the association between the population variables and COVID-19 mortality. Generalized linear model with Poisson distribution was used to determine the significant predictors of COVID-19 mortality. Results There was a significant positive correlation between median age, life expectancy, 65+ mortality and COVID-19 mortality while malaria prevalence, sex ratio and cardiovascular mortality were negatively correlated with COVID-19 mortality. Malaria prevalence, life expectancy and mortality rate were significant on multivariate regression analysis. Conclusion The results of this study support the hypotheses that there are reduced COVID-19 deaths in malaria endemic countries, although the results need to be proved further by clinical trials.
Stéphanie Sirard, Vincent Nault, Marie-France Langlois, Julie Perron, Louis Valiquette
Published: 18 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-11; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06682-8

Abstract:
Background Rates of adherence to available recommendations for dose adjustments in patients with severe obesity are generally low. Hence, antimicrobials are often underdosed in these patients. Antimicrobial stewardship programmes can improve the use of antimicrobials in hospitalised patients. The aim of the study was to analyse the impact of an antimicrobial stewardship programme based on a computerised clinical decision support system for optimal dosing and antimicrobial use in inpatients with severe obesity. Methods This quasi-experimental retrospective study using interrupted time series was conducted in an academic centre in Canada from August 2008 to June 2018. The Antimicrobial Prescription Surveillance System was implemented in August 2010 (intervention 1) and specific rules targeting patients with class III obesity (body mass index ≥ 40 kg/m2) were added in June 2014 (intervention 2). Data were collected from all hospitalised adults receiving antimicrobials which required dose adjustment for severe obesity and were stratified by body mass index. Segmented regression analysis of interrupted time series was used to evaluate the impact of the Antimicrobial Prescription Surveillance System on the proportion of inappropriate days of therapy according to posology and on antimicrobial consumption. Results Overall, 65 205 antimicrobial prescriptions (68% non-obese, 25% class I-II obesity, and 7% class III obesity) were analysed. In patients with class III obesity, the intervention was associated with a decrease in the proportion of inappropriate days of therapy (trend after the first intervention, −0.8% per 2-month period [95% CI −1.1 to −0.5], p < 0.001; intercept, 11.3% [95% CI 8.2 to 14.5], p < 0.001), which led to a reduction of 35% over an eight-year period (from pre-intervention level of 19.1%). Intervention 1 resulted in a downward trend in antimicrobial consumption, followed by an increasing trend after intervention 2. In these patients, the most frequent interventions made by pharmacists targeted posology (46%). Conclusions Antimicrobial Prescription Surveillance System had a positive impact on dosing optimisation and antimicrobial consumption in patients with class III obesity. Improving antimicrobial prescriptions in these patients is important because suboptimal dosing could be associated with unfavourable outcomes.
Susan Tuddenham, Christina A. Stennett, Richard A. Cone, Jacques Ravel, Andrew N. Macintyre, Khalil G. Ghanem, Xin He, Rebecca M. Brotman
Published: 18 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-13; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06512-x

Abstract:
Background Limited data suggest that personal lubricants may damage the vaginal mucosal epithelium, alter the vaginal microbiota, and increase inflammation. We compared vaginal cytokine profiles and microbiota before and after vaginal lubricant use and condomless vaginal sex. Methods Reproductive-age women were recruited to a 10-week observational cohort study and were asked to self-collect vaginal samples and behavioral diaries daily. This nested case–control analysis utilized samples collected before and after self-reported condomless sexual activity with lubricants (22 case participants) and without lubricants (22 control participants). Controls were matched to cases on race/ethnicity. Microbiota composition was characterized by sequencing amplicons of the 16S rRNA gene V3–V4 regions. Cytokine concentrations were quantified using a magnetic bead 41-plex panel assay and read using a Bio-Plex 200 array reader. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests were used to assess baseline differences in vaginal cytokines between cases and controls as well as differences pre- and post-exposure. Linear mixed effects models were used to examine differences in relative post-to-pre change in each individual cytokine between matched cases and controls. Similar analyses were conducted for the microbiota data. Results Mean age was 29.8 years (SD 6.8), and 63.6% were African American. There were few statistically significant changes in cytokines or microbiota before and after exposure in cases or controls. In mixed-effects modeling, the mean relative post-to-pre change of cytokines was higher in cases vs. controls for macrophage derived chemokine (MDC) (p = 0.03). The microbiota data revealed no significant changes when measured by similarity scores, diversity indexes and descriptive community state types (CST) transition analyses. However, post sexual activity, the mean relative abundance of L. crispatus decreased for those who used lubricants (particularly those who were L. iners-dominated prior to exposure). Conclusions Although there were overall few differences in the vaginal microbiota and cytokine profiles of lubricant users and controls before and after condomless vaginal sex, there was a trend toward decreases in relative abundance of L. crispatus following use of lubricant. Future larger studies that take into account osmolarity and composition of lubricants may provide additional insights.
Ling-Xiao Qu, Yang Shi, Kai-Yun Chen, Yi-Han Lu, Hong Ren
Published: 18 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-11; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06577-8

Abstract:
Background Shanghai, as a pilot city of China to achieve the goal of eliminating hepatitis C, its strategy of allocating medical resources is a pressing problem to be solved. This study aims to infer the time-spatial clustering patterns of HCV-infected cases, and grasp the dynamic genotype distribution of HCV, thereby inform elimination strategies of HCV with efficacy and efficiency. Methods Reported HCV cases including their demographic information in Shanghai city from 2005 to 2018 were released from the National Infectious Disease Reporting Information System, population data at community scale, geographical layers of hospitals, communities and districts were gathered from former research. Blood samples of HCV-infected individuals were collected during 2014–2018 from 24 sentinel hospitals, HCV-antibody test, qualitative nucleic acid test and NS5B/5’UTR gene amplification were performed accordingly to determine the genotypes of the specimen. Furthermore, global and local spatial self-correlation analysis of both acute and chronic HCV infections were conducted at community scale year by year, then time-spatial clusters of acute and chronic HCV infections and HCV genotype distribution of specimen collected from sentinel hospitals by districts were mapped by using Arcmap10.1. Results A total of 2631 acute HCV cases and 15,063 chronic HCV cases were reported in Shanghai from 2005 to 2018, with a peak in 2010 and 2017, respectively. The mean age of chronic HCV patients was 49.70 ± 14.55 years, 3.34 ± 0.32 years older than the acute (t = 10.55, P-value < 0.01). The spatial distribution of acute HCV infection formed one primary cluster (Relative Risk = 2.71), and the chronic formed one primary cluster and three secondary clusters with Relative Risk ranged from 1.94 to 14.42, meanwhile, an overlap of 34 communities between acute and chronic HCV clusters were found with time period spans varied from 6 to 12 years. Genotype 1 (N = 257, 49.71%) was the most prevalent HCV genotype in Shanghai, genotype 3 infections have increased in recent years. Baoshan district presented cluster of acute HCV and the highest proportion of genotype 2, Pudong new area was the cluster of chronic HCV and occupied the highest proportion of genotype 3. Conclusions Despite the low prevalence of HCV infection, it is still needed to push forward the elimination process in Shanghai, as there is a certain amount of HCV infected people waiting to be treated. The time-spatial clustering patterns and the dynamic of HCV genotype distribution together indicated a changing constitution of different transmission routes of HCV infection, thus, a focused strategy may be needed for high-risk population related to genotype 3 infection like drug users, in addition to an enforcement of the existing measures of preventing the iatrogenic and hematogenic transmission of HCV.
Laure Kamus, Bénédicte Roquebert, Jérôme Allyn, Nicolas Allou, Dorothée Valance, Charles Simon, Marie-Christine Jaffar-Bandjee, Ghislaine Descours, Sophie Jarraud, Guillaume Miltgen
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-5; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06651-1

Abstract:
Background Legionella spp. are ubiquitous freshwater bacteria responsible for rare but potentially severe cases of Legionnaires’ disease (LD). Legionella sainthelensi is a non-pneumophila Legionella species that was first isolated in 1980 from water near Mt. St-Helens (USA). Although rare cases of LD caused by L. sainthelensi have been reported, very little data is available on this pathogen. Case presentation We describe the first documented case of severe bilateral pleuropneumonia caused by L. sainthelensi. The patient was a 35-year-old woman with Sharp’s syndrome treated with long-term hydroxychloroquine and corticosteroids who was hospitalized for an infectious illness in a university hospital in Reunion Island (France). The patient’s clinical presentation was complicated at first (bilateral pneumonia, multiloculated pleural effusion, then bronchopleural fistula) but her clinical condition eventually improved with the reintroduction of macrolides (spiramycin) in intensive care unit. Etiological diagnosis was confirmed by PCR syndromic assay and culture on bronchoalveolar lavage. Conclusions To date, only 14 documented cases of L. sainthelensi infection have been described worldwide. This pathogen is difficult to identify because it is not or poorly detected by urinary antigen and molecular methods (like PCR syndromic assays that primarily target L. pneumophila and that have only recently been deployed in microbiology laboratories). Pneumonia caused by L. sainthelensi is likely underdiagnosed as a result. Clinicians should consider the possibility of non-pneumophila Legionella infection in patients with a compatible clinical presentation when microbiological diagnostic tools targeted L. pneumophila tested negative.
Hsiao-Chin Wang, Ming-Horng Tsai, Shih-Ming Chu, Chen-Chu Liao, Mei-Yin Lai, Hsuan-Rong Huang, Ming-Chou Chiang, Ren-Huei Fu, Jen-Fu Hsu
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-9; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06673-9

Abstract:
Background Ventilator associated pneumonia (VAP) caused by more than one microorganisms is not uncommon and may be potentially challenging, but the relevant data is scarce in ventilated neonates. We aimed to investigate the clinical characteristics and outcomes of polymicrobial VAP in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Methods All neonates with definite diagnosis of VAP from a tertiary level neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in Taiwan between October 2017 and September 2020 were prospectively observed and enrolled for analyses. All clinical features, therapeutic interventions and outcomes were compared between the polymicrobial VAP and monomicrobial VAP episodes. Multivariate regression analyses were used to find the independent risk factors for treatment failure. Results Among 236 episodes of neonatal VAP, 60 (25.4%) were caused by more than one microorganisms. Polymicrobial VAP episodes were more likely to be associated with multidrug-resistant pathogens (53.3% versus 34.7%, P = 0.014), more often occurred in later days of life and in neonates with prolonged intubation and underlying bronchopulmonary dysplasia. Otherwise most clinical characteristics of polymicrobial VAP were similar to those of monomicrobial VAP. The therapeutic responses and treatment outcomes were also comparable between these two groups, although modification of therapeutic antibiotics were significantly more common in polymicrobial VAP episodes than monomicrobial VAP episodes (63.3% versus 46.2%; P < 0.001). None of any specific pathogens was significantly associated with worse outcomes. Instead, it is the severity of illness, including presence of concurrent bacteremia, septic shock, and requirement of high-frequency oscillatory ventilator and underlying neurological sequelae that are independently associated with treatment failure. Conclusions Polymicrobial VAP accounted for 25.4% of all neonatal VAP in the NICU, and frequently occurred in neonates with prolonged intubation and underlying bronchopulmonary dysplasia. In our cohort, most clinical features, therapeutic responses and final outcomes of neonates with monomicrobial and polymicrobial VAP did not differ significantly.
Amanda Brass, Andrew P. Shoubridge, Maria Crotty, Lidia Morawska, Scott C. Bell, Ming Qiao, Richard J. Woodman, Craig Whitehead, Maria C. Inacio, Caroline Miller, et al.
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-7; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06659-7

Abstract:
Background SARS-CoV-2 poses a considerable threat to those living in residential aged care facilities (RACF). RACF COVID-19 outbreaks have been characterised by the rapid spread of infection and high rates of severe disease and associated mortality. Despite a growing body of evidence supporting airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2, current infection control measures in RACF including hand hygiene, social distancing, and sterilisation of surfaces, focus on contact and droplet transmission. Germicidal ultraviolet (GUV) light has been used widely to prevent airborne pathogen transmission. Our aim is to investigate the efficacy of GUV technology in reducing the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection in RACF. Methods A multicentre, two-arm double-crossover, randomised controlled trial will be conducted to determine the efficacy of GUV devices to reduce respiratory viral transmission in RACF, as an adjunct to existing infection control measures. The study will be conducted in partnership with three aged care providers in metropolitan and regional South Australia. RACF will be separated into paired within-site zones, then randomised to intervention order (GUV or control). The initial 6-week period will be followed by a 2-week washout before crossover to the second 6-week period. After accounting for estimated within-zone and within-facility correlations of infection, and baseline infection rates (10 per 100 person-days), a sample size of n = 8 zones (n = 40 residents/zone) will provide 89% power to detect a 50% reduction in symptomatic infection rate. The primary outcome will be the incidence rate ratio of combined symptomatic respiratory infections for intervention versus control. Secondary outcomes include incidence rates of hospitalisation for complications associated with respiratory infection; respiratory virus detection in facility air and fomite samples; rates of laboratory confirmed respiratory illnesses and genomic characteristics. Discussion Measures that can be deployed rapidly into RACF, that avoid the requirement for changes in resident and staff behaviour, and that are effective in reducing the risk of airborne SARS-CoV-2 transmission, would provide considerable benefit in safeguarding a highly vulnerable population. In addition, such measures might substantially reduce rates of other respiratory viruses, which contribute considerably to resident morbidity and mortality. Trial registration Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12621000567820 (registered on 14th May, 2021).
Yuqiao Mao, Xia Li, Haibo Lou, Xiaoyu Shang, Yanjun Mai, Lan Yang, Fuhua Peng, Xihua Fu
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-5; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06661-z

Abstract:
Background Coccidioidomycosis is a systemic infection caused by dimorphic fungi Coccidioides spp. endemic to Southwestern United States and Central and South America. A history of residence and travel in these areas is essential for the diagnostic of coccidioidomycosis, which has highly variable symptoms ranging from asymptomatic to severe, disseminated infection, and even death. Immunocompromised patients of coccidioidomycosis experience a high risk of dissemination, chronic infection, and mortality. Meningitis is one of the most deleterious coccidioidomycosis and can cause various life-threatening complications. Case presentation Here we report a case of Coccidioides posadasii meningitis in a 49-year-old female who returned to China after one and a half years residence in Los Angeles, USA. The repeated routine cultures using CSF for bacteria or fungi were all negative. To hunt for an infectious etiology, the state-of-the-art technology metagenomic next-generation sequencing (mNGS) was then utilized, suggesting Coccidioides posadasii. Organizational pathological examination and polymerase-chain-reaction (PCR) results subsequently confirmed the mNGS detection. Conclusion To our knowledge, cases for coccidioidal meningitis have been rarely reported in China. While global travelling may spread this disease across continents and make the diagnosis more difficult. mNGS can detect almost all known pathogens with high sensitivity and specificity, especially for uncommon pathogen, such as Coccidioides posadasii in China.
Ming-Gui Wang, Shou-Quan Wu, Jian-Qing He
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06666-8

Abstract:
Background Drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) remains a major public health concern worldwide. Bedaquiline, a novel diarylquinoline, was added to the WHO-recommended all-oral regimen for patients with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the effect of bedaquiline on tuberculosis treatment outcomes. Methods We searched the PubMed, Web of Science and EMBASE databases for relevant studies published up to March 12, 2021. We included studies in which some participants received bedaquiline and others did not. Stata version 16.0 (Stata Corp., College Station, Texas, USA) was used to analyze the results of the meta-analysis. Risk ratios (RRs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were calculated to evaluate the effect of bedaquiline on drug-resistant tuberculosis. Between-study heterogeneity was examined by the I-squared test. Randomized controlled trials were assessed for quality using the Jadad scale, and cohort studies were assessed using the Newcastle–Ottawa scale. Results Eight studies, including 2 randomized controlled trials and 6 cohort studies involving a total of 21,836 subjects, were included. When compared with the control, bedaquiline treatment was associated with higher rates of culture conversion (risk ratio (RR):1.272 (1.165–1.389), P < 0.001). We found substantial evidence of a significant reduction in all-cause death (RR: 0.529 (0.454–0.616), P < 0.001)) in the bedaquiline treatment group. There was no significant reduction in treatment success (RR = 0.980 (0.948–1.013, P = 0.234)). Conclusions This study demonstrated that compared with patients who do not receive bedaquiline, this drug has the potential to achieve a higher culture conversion rate and a lower mortality risk among drug-resistant tuberculosis cases.
, Annalena Härtl, Dirk Pabst, Randi Manegold, Carola Holzner, Christian Taube, Sebastian Dolff, Benedikt Michael Schaarschmidt, Lale Umutlu, Clemens Kill, et al.
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06663-x

Abstract:
Background The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic remains a major challenge for worldwide health care systems and in particular emergency medicine. An early and safe triage in the emergency department (ED) is especially crucial for proper therapy. Clinical symptoms of COVID-19 comprise those of many common diseases; thus, differential diagnosis remains challenging. Method We performed a retrospective study of 314 ED patients presenting with conceivable COVID-19 symptoms during the first wave in Germany. All were tested for COVID-19 with SARS-Cov-2-nasopharyngeal swabs. Forty-seven patients were positive. We analyzed the 267 COVID-19 negative patients for their main diagnosis and compared COVID-19 patients with COVID-19 negative respiratory infections for differences in laboratory parameters, symptoms, and vital signs. Results Among the 267 COVID-19 negative patients, 42.7% had respiratory, 14.2% had other infectious, and 11.2% had cardiovascular diseases. Further, 9.0% and 6.7% had oncological and gastroenterological diagnoses, respectively. Compared to COVID-19 negative airway infections, COVID-19 patients showed less dyspnea (OR 0.440; p = 0.024) but more dysgeusia (OR 7.631; p = 0.005). Their hospital stay was significantly longer (9.0 vs. 5.6 days; p = 0.014), and their mortality significantly higher (OR 3.979; p = 0.014). Conclusion For many common ED diagnoses, COVID-19 should be considered a differential diagnosis. COVID-19 cannot be distinguished from COVID-19 negative respiratory infections by clinical signs, symptoms, or laboratory results. When hospitalization is necessary, the clinical course of COVID-19 airway infections seems to be more severe compared to other respiratory infections. Trial registration: German Clinical Trial Registry DRKS, DRKS-ID of the study: DRKS00021675 date of registration: May 8th, 2020, retrospectively registered.
, Mattias Rööst, Martin Sundqvist, Katarina Hedin
Published: 17 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-11; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06665-9

Abstract:
Background Few studies on pharyngotonsillitis have examined the clinical presentation of different aetiologies where pathogens have been detected using molecular methods. We aimed to assess how well clinical signs and symptoms can predict (1) the presence or absence of a broad range of viruses and bacteria, and (2) reconsultations for a sore throat or a complication. Methods In this descriptive observational prospective study in primary health care 220 patients aged 15–45 with suspected pharyngotonsillitis were sampled from nose, throat and blood and screened for 20 bacteria and viruses using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), culture and serology. Odds ratios (OR) and predictive values with 95% confidence intervals (CI) were used to show association between microbiological findings and clinical signs and symptoms. Patients were followed up after 3 months by reviewing electronic medical records. Results Both cough and coryza were more common in patients with only viruses (67%) than in patients with only bacteria (21%) (p < 0.001), whereas tonsillar coating was more common in patients with only bacteria (53%) than in patients with only viruses (29%) (p = 0.006). Tonsillar coating (adjusted OR 6.0; 95% CI 2.5–14) and a lack of cough (adjusted OR 3.5; 95% CI 1.5–8.0) were significantly associated with Streptococcus pyogenes (group A streptococci; GAS) and with any bacterial finding. A Centor score of 3–4 had a positive predictive value of 49% (95% CI 42–57) for GAS and 66% (95% CI 57–74) for any bacterial findings. The use of rapid antigen detection test for GAS increased the positive predictive value for this group to 93%. Conclusions Signs and symptoms, both single and combined, were insufficient to rule in GAS or other pathogens. However, both cough and coryza were useful to rule out GAS. The results support the clinical approach of restricting rapid antigen detection testing to patients with 3–4 Centor criteria. The low carriage rate of bacteria among asymptomatic controls implied that most detections in patients represented a true infection.
, Viola Knop, Marcus Maximilian Mücke, Falk Ochsendorf, Stefan Zeuzem
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-6; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06655-x

Abstract:
Background Cases of immune complex vasculitis have been reported following COVID-19 infections; so far none in association with novel mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccination. This case report describes a cutaneous immune complex vasculitis after vaccination with BNT162b2. Case presentation A 76-year old male with liver cirrhosis developed an immune complex vasculitis 12 days after the second injection of BNT162b2. On physical examination, the patient presented with pruritic purpuric macules on hands and feet, flexor and extensor parts of both legs and thighs and lower abdomen, and bloody diarrhoea. Laboratory testing showed elevated inflammatory markers. After short treatment with oral steroids all clinical manifestations and laboratory findings resolved. Conclusions An increasing number of clinical manifestations have been attributed to COVID-19 infection and vaccination. This is the first written report of immune complex vasculitis after vaccination with BNT162b2. We present our case report and a discussion in the light of type three hypersensitivity reaction.
Saro Abdella, , Geremew Tasew, Atkure Defar, Asefa Deressa, Feyisa Regasa, Frehiwot Teka, Eyasu Tigabu, Dereje Nigussie, Tefera Belachew, et al.
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-7; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06652-0

Abstract:
Background The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and became pandemic after emerging in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Several studies have been conducted to understand the key features of COVID-19 and its public health impact. However, the prognostic factors of COVID-19 are not well studied in the African setting. In this study, we aim to determine the epidemiological and clinical features of COVID-19 cases, immunological and virological courses, interaction with nutritional status, and response to treatment for COVID-19 patients in Ethiopia. Methods A multi-center cohort study design will be performed. Patients with confirmed COVID-19 infection admitted to selected treatment centers will be enrolled irrespective of their symptoms and followed-up for 12 months. Baseline epidemiological, clinical, laboratory and imaging data will be collected from treatment records, interviews, physical measurements, and biological samples. Follow-up data collection involves treatment and prognostic outcomes to be measured using different biomarkers and clinical parameters. Data collection will be done electronically using the Open Data Kit (ODK) software package and then exported to STATA/SPSS for analysis. Both descriptive and multivariable analyses will be performed to assess the independent determinants of the treatment outcome and prognosis to generate relevant information for informed prevention and case management. The primary outcomes of this study are death/survival and viral shedding. Secondary outcomes include epidemiological characteristics, clinical features, genetic frequency shifts (genotypic variations), and nutritional status. Discussion This is the first large prospective cohort study of patients in hospitals with COVID-19 in Ethiopia. The results will enable us to better understand the epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 in Africa. This study will also provide useful information for effective public health measures and future pandemic preparedness and in response to outbreaks. It will also support policymakers in managing the epidemic based on scientific evidence. Trial Registration: The Protocol prospectively registered in ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT04584424) on 30 October, 2020.
Haiting Qin, Ye Qiu, Yanmei Huang, Mianluan Pan, Dong Lan, Wen Zeng,
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-7; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06641-3

Abstract:
Background Talaromyces marneffei (TM) primarily infects patients with co-morbidities that cause immunodeficiency, but non-secretory myeloma (NSMM) is rare. TSM and NSMM are associated with fever, osteolysis, and swollen lymph nodes, thereby making it difficult for clinicians to make differential diagnosis. In this case, we describe TM infection coexisting with NSMM. Case presentation We retrospectively reviewed the case of a male (without human immunodeficiency virus infection) with fever, thoracalgia, swollen lymph nodes, and subcutaneous nodules who presented to the First Affiliated Hospital of Guangxi Medical University in February 2014. Chest computed tomography revealed patchy infiltration and positron emission tomography/computed tomography showed increased metabolic activity in the lower-right lung, lymph nodes, left ninth rib, and right ilium. Pathological examination of the lung, lymph nodes, subcutaneous nodules, and bone marrow showed no malignancy, he was diagnosed with community-acquired pneumonia. His clinical symptoms did not improve after anti-bacterial, anti-Mycobacterium tuberculosis, and anti-non-M. tuberculosis treatment. Later, etiological culture and pathological examination of the subcutaneous nodule proved TM infection, and the patient was re-diagnosed with disseminated TSM, which involved the lungs, lymph nodes, skin, bone, and subcutaneous tissue. After antifungal treatment, the patient showed significant improvement, except for the pain in his bones. Imaging showed aggravated osteolysis, and bone marrow biopsy and immunohistochemistry indicated NSMM. Thus, we conclusively diagnosed the case as NSMM with TSM (involving the lungs, lymph nodes, skin, and subcutaneous tissue). His condition improved after chemotherapy, and he was symptom-free for 7 years. Conclusion TM infection is rare in individual with NSMM. Since they have clinical manifestation in common, easily causing misdiagnosis and missed diagnosis, multiple pathological examinations and tissue cultures are essential to provide a differential diagnosis.
, Akira Saito, Fujimi Kawai, Kazuhiro Ishikawa, Ryo Hasegawa, Takahiro Suzuki, Takahisa Fujino, Katsuhito Kinoshita, Taku Asano, Atsushi Mizuno, et al.
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-17; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06590-x

Abstract:
Background Entamoeba histolytica (E. histolytica) is rarely identified as a cause of amebic pericarditis. We report a case of amebic pericarditis complicated by cardiac tamponade, in which the diagnosis was missed initially and was made retrospectively by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing of a stored sample of pericardial fluid. Furthermore, we performed a systematic review of the literature on amebic pericarditis. Case presentation A 71-year-old Japanese man who had a history of sexual intercourse with several commercial sex workers 4 months previously, presented to our hospital with left chest pain and cough. He was admitted on suspicion of pericarditis. On hospital day 7, he developed cardiac tamponade requiring urgent pericardiocentesis. The patient’s symptoms temporarily improved, but 1 month later, he returned with fever and abdominal pain, and multiple liver lesions were found in the right lobe. Polymerase chain reaction of the aspiration fluid of the liver lesion and pericardial and pleural fluid stored from the previous hospitalization were all positive for E. histolytica. Together with the positive serum antibody for E. histolytica, a diagnosis of amebic pericarditis was made. Notably, the diagnosis was missed initially and was made retrospectively by performing PCR testing. The patient improved with metronidazole 750 mg thrice daily for 14 days, followed by paromomycin 500 mg thrice daily for 10 days. Conclusions This case suggests that, although only 122 cases of amebic pericarditis have been reported, clinicians should be aware of E. histolytica as a potential causative pathogen. The polymerase chain reaction method was used to detect E. histolytica in the pericardial effusion and was found to be useful for the diagnosis of amebic pericarditis in addition to the positive results for the serum antibody testing for E. histolytica. Because of the high mortality associated with delayed treatment, prompt diagnosis should be made.
Hui-Dan Jing, Lei Li, Jun-Ying Tian, Dong-Po Jiang
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-6; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06653-z

Abstract:
Background Gas gangrene is usually manifested as myonecrosis and subcutaneous gas accumulation, but rarely manifested as arterial occlusion or pneumatosis in the right ventricle and the pulmonary artery. Case presentation We report a case of gas gangrene caused by Clostridium septicum. The patient developed gas gangrene after being pecked by a chicken but turned for the better following antibiotic treatment and debriment. Imaging test revealed a rare occlusion of the right femoral artery and pneumatosis in the right ventricle and the main pulmonary artery. Conclusions In the presence of gas gangrene, special care must be taken to prevent against the formation of circulatory air embolism. The gas gangrene-induced gangrene in the limb of this patient might be attributed to the combined action of infection and arterial occlusion. MDT (Multidisciplinary team)-Green Channel mode is conductive to treatment success of gas gangrene.
, Valeriia V. Kaptelova, Anna Y. Bukharina, Olga Y. Shipulina, Elena V. Korneenko, Stepan S. Saenko, Alexander V. Lukyanov, Antonina A. Grishaeva, Antonina A. Ploskireva, Anna S. Speranskaya, et al.
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06664-w

Abstract:
Background The dual infection with SARS-CoV-2 is poorly described and is currently under discussion. We present a study of two strains of SARS-CoV-2 detected in the same patient during the same disease presentation. Case presentation A patient in their 90 s was hospitalised with fever. Oropharyngeal swab obtained on the next day (sample 1) tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. Five days later, the patient was transferred to the ICU (intensive care unit) of the hospital specialising in the treatment of COVID-19 patients, where the patient's condition progressively worsened and continuous oxygen insufflation was required. Repeated oropharyngeal swab (sample 2), which was taken eight days after the first one, also tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. After 5 days of ICU treatment, the patient died. The cause of death was a coronavirus infection, which progressed unfavourably due to premorbid status. We have performed sequencing of full SARS-CoV-2 genomes from oropharyngeal swabs obtained eight days apart. Genomic analysis revealed the presence of two genetically distant SARS-CoV-2 strains in both swabs. Detected strains belong to different phylogenetic clades (GH and GR) and differ in seven nucleotide positions. The relative abundance of strains was 70% (GH) and 30% (GR) in the first swab, and 3% (GH) and 97% (GR) in the second swab. Conclusions Our findings suggest that the patient was infected by two genetically distinct SARS-CoV-2 strains at the same time. One of the possible explanations is that the second infection was hospital-acquired. Change of the dominant strain ratio during disease manifestation could be explained by the advantage or higher virulence of the GR clade strain.
Correction
Yvette N. Löwensteyn, Natalie I. Mazur, Harish Nair, Joukje E. Willemsen, Ghislaine van Thiel, Louis Bont, Maria Ahuoiza Garba, Fatima Jumai Giwa, Mohammad Hafiz Rasooly, Aminullah Shirpoor, et al.
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-1; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06671-x

Zhiman Xie, Jingzhen Lai, Chuanyi Ning, Guangjing Ruan,
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-4; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06611-9

Abstract:
Background Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection may induce central nervous system complications in HIV/AIDS patients. However, it is rare to have paraplegia caused by VZV infection but no herpes zoster clinically. Asymptomatic VZV infection in HIV/AIDS patient increased the difficulty of diagnosis. Case presentation We reported a 41-year-old male AIDS patient with rare asymptomatic VZV infection-induced paraplegia after his anti-retroviral therapy initiation. MRI of the spinal cord showed the morphology of the thoracic spinal cord was irregular and locally inflated. The patient was confirmed as VZV induced thoracic myelomyelitis by using the cerebrospinal fluid for metagenomic next-generation sequencing (mNGS). Conclusions mNGS may contribute to disease diagnosis for asymptomatic VZV infection-induced myelitis.
Correction
Yuya Ito, Takahiro Takazono, Satoru Koga, Yuichiro Nakano, Nobuyuki Ashizawa, Tatsuro Hirayama, Masato Tashiro, Tomomi Saijo, Kazuko Yamamoto, Yoshifumi Imamura, et al.
Published: 16 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-1; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06667-7

Nesrine Aissaoui, Samia Hamane, Maud Gits-Muselli, Antoine Petit, Mazouz Benderdouche, Blandine Denis, Alexandre Alanio, Sarah Dellière, Martine Bagot, Stéphane Bretagne
Published: 15 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-9; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06631-5

Abstract:
Background Leishmaniases are regularly seen in non-endemic areas due to the increase of international travels. They include cutaneous leishmaniases (CL) and mucocutaneous (MC) caused by different Leishmania species, and visceral leishmaniases (VL) which present with non-specific symptoms. Methods We reviewed all consecutive leishmaniasis cases seen between September 2012 and May 2020. The diagnostic strategy included microscopy after May-Grünwald-Giemsa staining, a diagnostic quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay, and species identification based on sequencing of the cytochrome b gene. Results Eighty-nine patients had a definitive leishmaniasis diagnosis. Nine patients had VL with Leishmania infantum. Eighty patients had CL. Twelve patients acquired CL after trips in Latin America (7 Leishmania guyanensis, 2 Leishmania braziliensis, 2 Leishmania mexicana, and 1 Leishmania panamensis). Species could be identified in 63 of the 68 CLs mainly after travel in North Africa (59%) with Leishmania major (65%), Leishmania tropica/killicki (24%), and L. infantum (11%), or in West Sub-Saharan Africa (32%), all due to L. major. The median day between appearance of the lesions and diagnosis was 90 [range 60–127]. Conclusions Our diagnostic strategy allows both positive diagnoses and species identifications. Travelers in West Sub-Saharan Africa and North Africa should be better aware of the risk of contracting leishmananiasis.
Jakub Smiechowicz, Barbara Barteczko-Grajek, Barbara Adamik, Jozef Bojko, Waldemar Gozdzik, Malgorzata Lipinska-Gediga
Published: 15 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-7; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06672-w

Abstract:
Background In Poland, little is known about the most serious cases of influenza that need admittance to the intensive care unit (ICU), as well as the use of extracorporeal respiratory support. Methods This was an electronic survey comprising ICUs in two administrative regions of Poland. The aim of the study was to determine the number of influenza patients with respiratory failure admitted to the ICU in the autumn–winter season of 2018/2019. Furthermore, respiratory support, outcome and other pathogens detected in the airways were investigated. Results Influenza infection was confirmed in 76 patients. The A(H1N1)pdm09 strain was the most common. 34 patients died (44.7%). The median age was 62 years, the median sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) score was 11 and was higher in patients who died (12 vs. 10, p = 0.017). Mechanical ventilation was used in 75 patients and high flow nasal oxygen therapy in 1 patient. Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) was used in 7 patients (6 survived), and extracorporeal carbon dioxide removal (ECCO2R) in 2 (1 survived). The prone position was used in 16 patients. In addition, other pathogens were detected in the airways on admittance to the ICU. Conclusion A substantial number of influenza infections occurred in the autumn–winter season of 2018/2019 that required costly treatment in the intensive care units. Upon admission to the ICU, influenza patients had a high degree of organ failure as assessed by the SOFA score, and the mortality rate was 44.7%. Advanced extracorporeal respiratory techniques offer real survival opportunities to patients with severe influenza-related ARDS. The presence of coinfection should be considered in patients with influenza and respiratory failure.
Yun Xie, Song Cao, Hui Dong, Hui Lv, Xiaolei Teng, JiaXiang Zhang, Tao Wang, Xiaoyan Zhang, Yun Qin, Yujing Chai, et al.
Published: 15 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06638-y

Abstract:
Background Our goal is to further elucidate the clinical condition and prognosis of patients with severe acute COVID-19 with EBV reactivation. Method This is a retrospective single-center study of COVID-19 patients admitted to the intensive care unit of Wuhan No. 3 Hospital (January 31 to March 27, 2020). According to whether Epstein-Barr virus reactivation was detected, the patients were divided into an EBV group and a Non-EBV group. Baseline data were collected including epidemiological, larithmics, clinical and imaging characteristics, and laboratory examination data. Results Of the 128 patients with COVID-19, 17 (13.3%) were infected with Epstein-Barr virus reactivation. In the symptoms,the rate of tachypnoea in the EBV group was apparently higher than that in the Non-EBV group. In lab tests, the lymphocyte and albumin of EBV group decreased more significantly than Non-EBV group, and the D-dimer and serum calcium of EBV group was higher than Non-EBV group. Regarding the infection index, CRP of EBV group was apparently above the Non-EBV group, and no significant difference was found in procalcitonin of the two groups. The incidence of respiratory failure, ARDS, and hypoproteinaemia of EBV group had more incidence than Non-EBV group. The 28-day and 14-day mortality rates of EBV group was significantly higher than that of Non-EBV group. Conclusions In the COVID-19 patients, patients with EBV reactivation had higher 28-day and 14-day mortality rates and received more immuno-supportive treatment than patients of Non-EBV group.
Marta Obremska, Monika Pazgan-Simon, Katarzyna Budrewicz, Lukasz Bilaszewski, Joanna Wizowska, Dariusz Jagielski, Beata Jankowska-Polanska, Klaudiusz Nadolny, Jarosław Madowicz, Jolanta Zuwala-Jagiello, et al.
Published: 14 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06645-z

Abstract:
Background Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) constitutes a major health burden worldwide due to high mortality rates and hospital bed shortages. SARS-CoV-2 infection is associated with several laboratory abnormalities. We aimed to develop and validate a risk score based on simple demographic and laboratory data that could be used on admission in patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection to predict in-hospital mortality. Methods Three cohorts of patients from different hospitals were studied consecutively (developing, validation, and prospective cohorts). The following demographic and laboratory data were obtained from medical records: sex, age, hemoglobin, mean corpuscular volume (MCV), platelets, leukocytes, sodium, potassium, creatinine, and C-reactive protein (CRP). For each variable, classification and regression tree analysis were used to establish the cut-off point(s) associated with in-hospital mortality outcome based on data from developing cohort and before they were used for analysis in the validation and prospective cohort. The covid-19 score was calculated as a sum of cut-off points associated with mortality outcome. Results The developing, validation, and prospective cohorts included 129, 239, and 497 patients, respectively (median age, 71, 67, and 70 years, respectively). The following cut of points associated with in-hospital mortality: age > 56 years, male sex, hemoglobin < 10.55 g/dL, MCV > 92.9 fL, leukocyte count > 9.635 or < 2.64 103/µL, platelet count, < 81.49 or > 315.5 103/µL, CRP > 51.14 mg/dL, creatinine > 1.115 mg/dL, sodium < 134.7 or > 145.4 mEq/L, and potassium < 3.65 or > 6.255 mEq/L. The AUC of the covid-19 score for predicting in-hospital mortality was 0.89 (0.84–0.95), 0.850 (0.75–0.88), and 0.773 (0.731–0.816) in the developing, validation, and prospective cohorts, respectively (P < 0.001The mortality of the prospective cohort stratified on the basis of the covid-19 score was as follows: 0–2 points,4.2%; 3 points, 15%; 4 points, 29%; 5 points, 38.2%; 6 and more points, 60%. Conclusion The covid-19 score based on simple demographic and laboratory parameters may become an easy-to-use, widely accessible, and objective tool for predicting mortality in hospitalized patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Jongkyu Kim, Jiwoong Jung, Tae Ho Kim, Naree Kang, Hanzo Choi, Dong Hyun Oh, Mi Young Ahn, Su Hyun Kim, Chorom Hahm, Young Kyong Lee, et al.
Published: 14 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-8; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06588-5

Abstract:
Background Robust evidenced treatment strategy for Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has not been established yet. Early, targeted, comprehensive management approach can be essential. Methods A lopinavir/ritonavir (LPV/r)-based antiviral treatment was administered to the patients with computed tomography (CT)-documented pneumonia. Medical records of patients with COVID-19, previously discharged or hospitalized for ≥ 21 days at the Seoul Medical Center from January 29 to April 15, 2020 were reviewed to analyze clinical and virological outcomes. Patients were divided into two groups (PCR-Negative conversion group vs. Non-negative conversion group and requiring oxygen group vs. Non-requiring oxygen group). Results In total, 136 patients with a mean age of 41.8 ± 18.2 years were included with median 3-day delay of hospitalization after illness. Thirteen (9.56%) were initially asymptomatic, and 5 (3.67%) were persistently asymptomatic. Eighty-five (62.5%) had CT-documented pneumonia, 94% of whom received LPV/r treatments. A total of 53 patients (38.97%) had negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) results within 28 days. Eight (9.4%) out of 85 pneumonic patients received oxygen supplementation. Patients with initial lower respiratory symptoms showed significant delay in PCR negative conversion (> 28 days) (odds ratio [OR] 0.166; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.067–0.477; P < 0.001). However, antiviral treatment for pneumonic patients was significantly related with early conversion within 28 days (OR 3.049; 95% CI 1.128–8.243; P = 0.028). Increasing age increased the likelihood of oxygen supplementation requirement in the pneumonic patient group (OR 1.108; 95% CI 1.021–1.202; P = 0.014). Conclusions Early, pneumonia targeted LPV/r-based antiviral therapy resulted in a significantly higher probability of negative conversion of PCR within 28 days compared to symptomatic treatment.
E. Blanc, G. Chaize, S. Fievez, C. Féger, E. Herquelot, A. Vainchtock, J. F. Timsit, J. Gaillat
Published: 14 September 2021
BMC Infectious Diseases, Volume 21, pp 1-10; https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06669-5

Abstract:
Background The prognosis of patients hospitalized with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) with regards to intensive care unit (ICU) admission, short- and long-term mortality is correlated with patient’s comorbidities. For patients hospitalized for CAP, including P-CAP, we assessed the prognostic impact of comorbidities known as at-risk (AR) or high-risk (HR) of pneumococcal CAP (P-CAP), and of the number of combined comorbidities. Methods Data on hospitalizations for CAP among the French 50+ population were extracted from the 2014 French Information Systems Medicalization Program (PMSI), an exhaustive national hospital discharge database maintained by the French Technical Agency of Information on Hospitalization (ATIH). Their admission diagnosis, comorbidities (nature, risk type and number), other characteristics, and their subsequent hospital stays within the year following their hospitalization for CAP were analyzed. Logistic regression models were used to assess the associations between ICU transfer, short- and 1-year in-hospital mortality and all covariates. Results From 182,858 patients, 149,555 patients aged ≥ 50 years (nonagenarians 17.8%) were hospitalized for CAP in 2014, including 8270 with P-CAP. Overall, 33.8% and 90.5% had ≥ 1 HR and ≥ 1 AR comorbidity, respectively. Cardiac diseases were the most frequent AR comorbidity (all CAP: 77.4%). Transfer in ICU occurred for 5.4% of CAP patients and 19.4% for P-CAP. Short-term and 1-year in-hospital mortality rates were 10.9% and 23% of CAP patients, respectively, significantly lower for P-CAP patients: 9.2% and 19.8% (HR 0.88 [95% CI 0.84–0.93], p < .0001). Both terms of mortality increased mostly with age, and with the number of comorbidities and combination of AR and HR comorbidities, in addition of specific comorbidities. Conclusions Not only specific comorbidities, but also the number of combined comorbidities and the combination of AR and HR comorbidities may impact the outcome of hospitalized CAP and P-CAP patients.
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