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European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases

, Volume 17, Issue 10, pp 724-726

Investigation of an Outbreak of Wound Infections due to Alcaligenes xylosoxidans Transmitted by Chlorhexidine in a Burns Unit

  • H. Vu-ThienAffiliated withService de Bactériologie-Virologie-Hygiène, Hôpital d'Enfants Armand-Trousseau, 26 Avenue du Dr Netter, F-75571 Paris Cedex 12, France
  • , J. C. DarbordAffiliated withLaboratoire de Microbiologie, Faculté des Sciences Pharmaceutiques et Biologiques, 4 Avenue de l'Observatoire, F-75270 Paris Cedex 06, France
  • , D. MoissenetAffiliated withService de Bactériologie-Virologie-Hygiène, Hôpital d'Enfants Armand-Trousseau, 26 Avenue du Dr Netter, F-75571 Paris Cedex 12, France
  • , C. DulotAffiliated withService de Bactériologie-Virologie-Hygiène, Hôpital d'Enfants Armand-Trousseau, 26 Avenue du Dr Netter, F-75571 Paris Cedex 12, France
  • , J. B. DufourcqAffiliated withUnité des Brûlés, Hôpital d'Enfants Armand-Trousseau, 26 Avenue du Dr Netter, F-75571 Paris Cedex 12, France
  • , P. MarsolAffiliated withUnité des Brûlés, Hôpital d'Enfants Armand-Trousseau, 26 Avenue du Dr Netter, F-75571 Paris Cedex 12, France
  • , A. Garbarg-ChenonAffiliated withService de Bactériologie-Virologie-Hygiène, Hôpital d'Enfants Armand-Trousseau, 26 Avenue du Dr Netter, F-75571 Paris Cedex 12, France

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Abstract

Alcaligenes xylosoxidans, an environmental gram-negative bacillus, was isolated within a 1-month period from six patients in a pediatric burns unit. Twelve isolates were studied, one from each of the six patients (five from wound cultures and one from a blood culture) and one from each of six contaminated atomizers containing chlorhexidine diluted to 600 mg/l. The biochemical and susceptibility patterns of all the isolates were similar, and their DNA enzyme restriction patterns were identical. The epidemic strain of Alcaligenes xylosoxidans was probably introduced into the atomizers during handling of the diluted solution, which failed to eliminate it.