Pulmonary Bacterial and Fungal Infections in Cancer Patients with Neutropaenia 1169-1172
Associate professor, Department of Microbiology
Fr. Muller Medical College, Kankanady
Mangalore, India - 575002
Phone: 0824 2238273
Background: The term, â€śimmunocompromised hostâ€ť describes a patient who is at an increased risk of life-threatening infections as the consequence of a decrease in the immunity. This study dealt with patients who were on radiotherapy or chemotherapy for underlying malignancies. A pulmonary infection is the most common complication in these patients. This study was conducted with the objective of recording the occurrence of opportunistic pulmonary infections in immunocompromised patients.
Materials and Methods: A total number of 100 cancer patients who were undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy, with neutropaenia, who were clinically diagnosed to have lower respiratory tract infections, who attended a medical college hospital, were included in the study during December 2008 to May 2010. Their sputum was collected and processed for the detection of various bacteria and fungi.
Results: Out of 100 patients, the cultures of 44 patients showed significiant growth. Among the isolates, Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the predominant pathogen which was found to cause pneumonia. Other pathogens which were found were gram negative bacilli and Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus. . A rare bacterium, Corynebacterium macginleyi, was isolated from a patient with carcinoma of the lung.
Interpretation and Conclusion: Patients with malignancy are prone to get infected with highly resistant strains of various bacteria which make the treatment difficult and increase the morbidity and mortality. We need to look out for rare organisms which cause pneumonia in immunocompromised patients.