Division of Infectious Diseases

Should We Add Daptomycin to β-Lactams in the Initial Treatment of Methicillin-susceptible S. aureus Bacteremia?

Content from Dr. Razan El Ramahi, originally posted in IDSA journal club.  Despite the availability of active antibiotics to treat Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia (SAB), controversy still exists regarding the optimal antibiotic strategy and whether combination antibiotics improve outcomes. In small clinical studies, a possible benefit was observed by adding daptomycin to β-lactams in the treatment of SAB. However, the numbers of methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) cases in these studies, published… Continue Reading

Novel Coronavirus – What You Need to Know Now

Content courtesy of Dr. Angela Hewlett Coronaviruses are common respiratory pathogens, and generally cause mild symptoms of the ‘common cold’.  However, other coronavirus strains have been known to cause outbreaks that lead to more severe disease like pneumonia, and even death.  Examples of these include SARS and MERS, which are both coronaviruses with mortality rates of 10% and 34%, respectively. Here is a newly published… Continue Reading

Blood culture contamination–it’s a big deal

Blood cultures are a key diagnostic test to detect bacteremia and appropriately treat patients with sepsis and are performed approximately 30 million times in the United States yearly. Unfortunately, contamination of blood cultures occurs in the 0.5% to 5% of samples (approximately 25% of positive blood cultures are due to contamination) which leads to inappropriate antibiotic treatment, additional unneeded tests, extended hospital length of stay,… Continue Reading

Antimicrobial Stewardship & Sepsis – A Great Debate

Optimal management of sepsis has long-been a holy grail in medicine. One area that remains fraught with debate is how to effectively balance the need for emergent antimicrobial administration with principles of antimicrobial stewardship. A recent Point–Counterpoint series on “Should Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics Be Routinely Administered to All Patients with Sepsis as Soon as Possible”published in CHEST highlights the debate. Disselkamp et al argue yes, early… Continue Reading

Surveillance for vascular catheter associated complications in home health care is needed

Content written by Dr. Mark Rupp.  Impressive gains in the prevention of central line associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI) have been realized in recent years in US hospitals. However, with efforts to improve efficiency and decrease hospital length of stay, patients are increasingly being discharged to home health care to receive intravenous therapy. The rate of complications associated with vascular catheterization in the home care setting… Continue Reading