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Nosocomial Infections on a Rehabilitation Unit in an Acute Care Hospital

  • Lindsay E. Nicolle (a1), Lisa Buffet (a1), Nancy Alfieri (a1) and Robert Tate (a1)


In a one-year retrospective review, 138 symptomatic infections were identified in 145 admissions to a rehabilitation unit. One hundred twenty-six (91%) infections were either urinary or skin and soft tissue infections. The daily incidence of infection increased with increasing numbers of infections for infected patients. Patient factors associated with infection included male sex, young age, spinal cord injury, admission for management of decubitus ulcers or urinary infection, history of urinary infection, urologic interventions or skin breakdown, and bladder and bowel incontinence. All patients with a history of chronic urinary infection or skin breakdown developed infection. In a logistic regression model, factors that were independently associated with risk of infection in the remaining patients included sex, incontinence, chronic neurologic disease, and prior urologic interventions. This review suggests rehabilitation patients are at high risk of acquiring nosocomial infection. The subgroup of patients with the highest risk of infection are identifiable by specific characteristics.


Corresponding author

Health Sciences Centre, MS675D-X20 Sherbrook Street, Winnipeg. Manitoba R3N IR9


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