Annals of Hematology

, Volume 91, Issue 8, pp 1299–1304 | Cite as

P. aeruginosa bloodstream infections among hematological patients: an old or new question?

  • Chiara CattaneoEmail author
  • F. Antoniazzi
  • S. Casari
  • G. Ravizzola
  • M. Gelmi
  • C. Pagani
  • M. D’Adda
  • E. Morello
  • A. Re
  • E. Borlenghi
  • N. Manca
  • G. Rossi
Original Article


Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a well-known cause of severe and potentially life-threatening infections among hematological patients. A prospective epidemiological surveillance program ongoing at our Hematology Unit revealed an increase over time of P. aeruginosa bloodstream infections (BSI). Their impact on outcome and antibiotic susceptibility was analyzed. BSI which consecutively occurred at our institution during a 70-month period were evaluated and correlated with type of pathogen, status of underlying disease, neutropenia, previous antibiotic therapy, resistance to antibiotics, and outcome. During the observation period, 441 BSI were recorded. Frequency of Gram-negative BSI was higher than that of other pathogens (57.3%). Overall, 66 P. aeruginosa BSI were recorded; 22 out of 66 were multiresistant (MR P. aeruginosa). Thirty-day mortality for all BSI was 11.3%; it was 27.3% for P. aeruginosa BSI and 36.4% for MR P. aeruginosa. At multivariate analysis, only active hematological disease and P. aeruginosa BSI were associated to an increased risk of death. For MR P. aeruginosa, BSI mortality was 83.3% vs. 18.8% when empiric therapy included or not an antibiotic with in vitro activity against P. aeruginosa (p = 0.011). Together with active disease, the emergence of P. aeruginosa BSI, particularly if multiresistant, was responsible for an increased risk of death among hematological patients at our institution. In this scenario, reconsidering the type of combination antibiotic therapy to be used as empiric treatment of neutropenic fever was worthwhile.


Hematological patients Bloodstream infections P. aeruginosa Antibiotic resistance Outcome 



The authors would like to thank Dr. Mario Tumbarello, Institute of Infectious Diseases, Agostino Gemelli Hospital, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Rome, Italy, and Dr. Liana Signorini, Inst. of Infectious and Tropical Disease, University of Brescia, Brescia, Italy for their assistance with the preparation of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chiara Cattaneo
    • 1
    Email author
  • F. Antoniazzi
    • 1
  • S. Casari
    • 2
  • G. Ravizzola
    • 3
  • M. Gelmi
    • 3
  • C. Pagani
    • 1
  • M. D’Adda
    • 1
  • E. Morello
    • 1
  • A. Re
    • 1
  • E. Borlenghi
    • 1
  • N. Manca
    • 3
  • G. Rossi
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. of HaematologySpedali CiviliBresciaItaly
  2. 2.Inst. of Infectious and Tropical DiseaseUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly
  3. 3.Inst. of MicrobiologyUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly

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