After implementing an “MRSA bundle” in 2007 including nasal surveillance, contact precautions for positive patients, hand hygiene, and culture-indoctrination of employees, MRSA infections among all VA hospital ICUs fell from 1.64 to 0.62 per 1000 patient-days (a 62% reduction, p<0.001). MRSA infections on the wards fell from 0.47 to 0.26 per 1000 patient-days (45% reduction, [… read more]
Huskins et al cluster-randomized 18 ICUs to an intervention of surveillance cultures with contact precautions for positive patients, or a control of no cultures and universal precautions (gloves). The intervention ICUs used contact precautions more frequently (51% vs. 38%), but had the same MRSA/VRE colonization/infection rates, the primary endpoint (40 vs 35%, p=0.35). Clinician compliance [… read more]
Trouillet et al randomized patients requiring mechanical ventilation 4 days after cardiac surgery to either immediate perc-trach, or delayed percutaneous tracheostomy at 15 days. There were no differences in ventilator-free days at 60 days, nor in survival at 28, 60, or 90 days, nor in rates of VAP; however, the early-trach group had a lower [… read more]
Overt vancomycin resistance in MRSA is still unusual, but ID docs are worried about the bug’s rising minimum inhibitory concentrations in some regions, with MICs > 1 mcg/mL associated with worse outcomes. Kullar et al retrospectively looked at Detroit’s Henry Ford Hospital’s 5-year micro data in 320 patients with MRSA bacteremia, reporting a 52% rate [… read more]
Latent tuberculosis infection in the U.S.: Horsburgh CR, NEJM 2011;364:1441-1448
Death, long hospital stays, and treatment failures are more likely when vancomycin is used for MRSA bacteremia with minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) > 1 mcg/mL. Lubin et al propose a clinical prediction rule to predict relative vancomycin resistance, based on a retrospective analysis of 272 patients with MRSA bacteremia at Tufts. Oversimplifying slightly: Having less [… read more]
Molecular diagnosis of respiratory tract infection in COPD exacerbations: Sethi S, Clin Infect Dis 2011;52 (supplement 4):S290-294.
Remember when you were a third year medical student? Me neither. But that’s when you first started to build that tough & isolating carapace to protect you from all the overwhelming emotions flying through the hospital, & you, this essay suggests. A seasoned clinical educator and a third-year med student have a conversation about our [… read more]
Patel et al ran 9,999 computer simulations using various vancomycin doses and MICs. When the MIC was 2.0 or greater, 2 g IV q12 hours failed to achieve target drug levels 57% of the time, with 35% predicted nephrotoxicity. But…it’s also true that multiple vancomycin models have been published, which are each internally valid using their own [… read more]
Mucormycosis: clinical presentations and management: Sun H, Lancet Infect Dis 2011;11:301-311.
In a retrospective review of 418 tunneled pleural catheters placed over 2 years, 91% of patients did not require any other drainage procedure. Spontaneous pleurodesis occurred in one-quarter, in whom the catheter was taken out at a median 44 days. More patients with catheters placed in the operating room achieved pleurodesis (36%). Complication rate overall [… read more]
Post cardiac arrest syndrome: Review of therapies: Stub D, Circulation 2011;123:1428-1435.
Survival varies widely among people with N1 non-small cell lung cancer. Examining SEER data on 1,682 patients age > 65, who had a median 8 lymph nodes resected between 1992 and 2005, Wisnivesky et al observe that the ratio of positive-to-negative sampled lymph nodes independently predicted survival. Having more than 50% positive LNs foretold a median survival [… read more]
Probiotics and lung diseases: Forsythe P, CHEST 2011;139:901-908.
Establishing mediastinal spread of non-small cell lung cancer (N2-3 disease) precludes surgery and worsens prognosis; whether PET-CT imaging can improve overall accuracy or safely prevent mediastinoscopies is still unknown. Fischer et al re-heat the data from their 2009 NEJM randomized trial in Denmark, with EUS-FNA and mediastinoscopy on 189 NSCLC patients, in which they concluded that the [… read more]
Pseudomonas pneumonia: Epidemiology, clinical diagnosis, source (Part 1) Fujitani S et al, CHEST 2011;139:909-919.
Ashraf et al selected people with lung nodules from the Danish Lung Cancer Screening Trial, referring them for PET. Having a suspicious PET scan, or a volume-doubling time (VDT) of < 1 year, each separately had a sensitivity of 71% and a specificity of 91% for lung cancer. Combining PET data with VDT improved sensitivity [… read more]
Sleep medicine, a 3,000-year history: Kirsch DB, CHEST 2011;139:939-946.
A retrospective look at 447 patients with stage I non-small cell lung cancer by Inoue et al suggests yes, but without affecting survival. When cancer recurred in those initially diagnosed by CT-guided needle biopsy, pleural dissemination was more likely (8 of 13 recurrences). However, 5-year disease free survival was 89% in the CT-biopsy group and [… read more]
Status epilepticus, refractory, treatment of: Holtkamp M, Curr Opin Crit Care 2011;17:94-100.