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Epidemiological study of Candida infections in blood: susceptibilities of Candida spp. to antifungal agents, and clinical features associated with the candidemia

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the susceptibility to antifungal agents of Candida spp. isolated from blood samples from patients in our hospital, located in Osaka, Japan. We also examined the clinical background of these patients. We analyzed fungi isolated from clinical blood samples obtained in our hospital over a period of 10 years (1993 to 2002). Antifungal susceptibility testing was carried out for six agents, using the National Committee of Clinical Laboratory Standards (NCCLS) M-27-A2 method. The clinical backgrounds were reviewed using the medical records of 125 patients who were diagnosed as having candidemia. The major fungi isolated were Candida parapsilosis (39.2%) and C. albicans (30.1%), and both were sensitive to fluconazole. One strain of C. glabrata and six strains of C. krusei were resistant to fluconazole, and they constituted 4.4% of all Candida spp. isolated. With the exception of C. parapsilosis, most fungi were susceptible to micafungin, although there is no universally agreed breakpoint for this drug. Analysis of the patients' clinical backgrounds revealed that the major underlying disease was cancer (46.4% excluding hematological malignancies). C. krusei was detected almost exclusively in patients with hematological malignancies. Indwelling venous catheters had been responsible for infection in 93.6% of the infected patients. The clinical outcomes of the 125 patients were favorable in 52% and poor in 48%, and subsequent removal of the indwelling catheters was effective in about half of the patients in whom this was done, with good prognosis. To prevent mycosis and its complications, indwelling catheters should be avoided as much as possible. Attention must be paid to the possibility that resistant isolates of Candida spp. can be selected as a result of the use of antifungal agents.

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Correspondence to Hakuo Takahashi.

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Nakamura, T., Takahashi, H. Epidemiological study of Candida infections in blood: susceptibilities of Candida spp. to antifungal agents, and clinical features associated with the candidemia. J Infect Chemother 12, 132–138 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10156-006-0438-y

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10156-006-0438-y

Key words

  • Candidemia
  • Catheters
  • Chemotherapy
  • Triazoles