Intensive Care Medicine

, Volume 33, Issue 7, pp 1272–1283 | Cite as

Invasive candidiasis in pediatric intensive care patients: epidemiology, risk factors, management, and outcome

  • Joanna Filioti
  • Kleomenis Spiroglou
  • Emmanuel Roilides
Pediatric Review



The incidence of candidemia in pediatric patients follows the same pattern of increase as in adults, but the rate of increase is greater. Pediatric patients in critical condition, particularly young infants, are especially vulnerable to invasive Candida infections (ICI), partly because of their age and severe underlying disease and partly because of the invasive procedures used.


Central venous catheters and arterial lines, parenteral nutrition, mechanical ventilation and extended use of antimicrobials enhance the risk of ICI. C. albicans continues to be the most prevalent isolate. However, an increasing role of non-C. albicans (NAC) spp., some of which are intrinsically or potentially resistant to antifungal agents, has been observed. NAC spp., particularly C. parapsilosis and C. tropicalis, account for almost half of ICI. The increased use of antifungals in immunocompromised patients, mainly prophylactically, is considered the strongest contributory factor to the changes in species distribution, which have subsequently affected the mortality and choice of empirical treatment.


Prompt removal of lines and initiation of antifungal treatment are the milestones of management. Conventional amphotericin B remains a commonly used antifungal agent, but its lipid formulations and fluconazole are also used frequently. Novel antifungal agents such as second-generation triazoles and echinocandins exhibit potential as alternative agents in critically ill children with ICI. Although response rates are still far from satisfactory, improved understanding of risk factors, preventive strategies and new treatment options promise a better future outcome.


Candida spp.  Pediatric intensive care unit Epidemiology Outcome Management 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joanna Filioti
    • 1
  • Kleomenis Spiroglou
    • 1
  • Emmanuel Roilides
    • 1
  1. 1.3rd Department of PediatricsAristotle University, Hippokration HospitalThessalonikiGreece

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