, Volume 91, Issue 5, pp 767-774
Date: 29 Nov 2011

A prospective survey of febrile events in hematological malignancies

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Abstract

The Hema e-Chart prospectively collected data on febrile events (FEs) in hematological malignancy patients (HMs). The aim of the study was to assess the number, causes and outcome of HM-related FEs. Data were collected in a computerized registry that systematically approached the study and the evolution of FEs developing in a cohort of adult HMs who were admitted to 19 hematology departments in Italy from March 2007 to December 2008. A total of 869 FEs in 3,197 patients with newly diagnosed HMs were recorded. Fever of unidentified origin (FUO) was observed in 386 cases (44.4%). The other causes of FE were identified as noninfectious in 48 cases (5.5%) and infectious in 435 cases (50.1%). Bacteria were the most common cause of infectious FEs (301 cases), followed by fungi (95 cases), and viruses (7 cases). Mixed agents were isolated in 32 episodes. The attributable mortality rate was 6.7% (58 FEs). No deaths were observed in viral infection or in the noninfectious groups, while 25 deaths were due to FUO, 16 to bacterial infections, 14 to fungal infections, and three to mixed infections. The Hema e-Chart provided a complete system for the epidemiological study of infectious complications in HMs.