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Long-Term Fecal Carriage in Infants and Intra-Household Transmission of CTX-M-15-Producing Klebsiella Pneumoniae Following a Nosocomial Outbreak

Objectives To investigate the duration of faecal carriage of CTX-M-15-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae in infants colonised during a nosocomial neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) outbreak after discharge from hospital, possible risk factors for long-term colonisation and transmission to household contacts (HCs).

Methods Fifty-one infants colonised with two unrelated clones of CTX-M-15 K. pneumoniae [sequence type (ST) 17 and ST485] during an NICU outbreak and 60 HCs provided faecal and rectal samples, respectively, every 1–3 months after hospital discharge. Extended-spectrum b-lactamase (ESBL)-producing strains of K. pneumoniae were identified on Chrom ID ESBL agar and examined by antimicrobial susceptibility testing. blaCTX-M-15 was detected by PCR and DNA sequencing. Clonal relationship was examined by PFGE.

Results The median carriage time in infants after discharge was 12.5 months (IQR 9.5–17.5). Stable antimicrobial susceptibility patterns in PFGE-related strains confirmed the intestinal persistence of both outbreak strains. Risk factors for prolonged faecal carriage in infants were delivery by caesarean section [hazard ratio (HR) 2.4, 95% CI 1.1–5.5, P¼0.029] and treatment with antibiotics during hospitalisation (HR 4.5, 95% CI 1.6–12.6, P¼0.004). Transmission of CTX-M-15 K. pneumoniae was observed in 9/28 (32%) households. Median carriage length in parents was 2.5 months (IQR 1.0–5.0) (P,0.001 compared with infants).

Conclusions Infants may be long-term faecal carriers of ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae after colonisation during hospitalisation in the neonatal period. Delivery by caesarean section and antibiotic treatment during hospitalisation are possible risk factors for prolonged carriage. Faecal ESBL carriage in infants represents a reservoir for intra-household spread of ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae.

Author: Löhr IH, Rettedal S, Natås OB, Naseer U, Oymar K, Sundsfjord A

Citation: J Antimicrob Chemother. 2013 Jan 3. [Epub ahead of print]

Published: 03/01/2013

Publication Type: Journal article

Publisher: Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy