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To reduce both inappropriate testing for and diagnosis of healthcare-onset (HO) Clostridioides difficile infections (CDIs).
We performed a retrospective analysis of C. difficile testing from hospitalized children before (October 2017–October 2018) and after (November 2018–October 2020) implementing restrictive computerized provider order entry (CPOE).
Study sites included hospital A (a ∼250-bed freestanding children’s hospital) and hospital B (a ∼100-bed children’s hospital within a larger hospital) that are part of the same multicampus institution.
In October 2018, we implemented CPOE. No testing was allowed for infants aged ≤12 months, approval of the infectious disease team was required to test children aged 13–23 months, and pathology residents’ approval was required to test all patients aged ≥24 months with recent laxative, stool softener, or enema use. Interrupted time series analysis and Mann-Whitney U test were used for analysis.
An interrupted time series analysis revealed that from October 2017 to October 2020, the numbers of tests ordered and samples sent significantly decreased in all age groups (P < .05). The monthly median number of HO-CDI cases significantly decreased after implementation of the restrictive CPOE in children aged 13–23 months (P < .001) and all ages combined (P = .003).
Restrictive CPOE for CDI in pediatrics was successfully implemented and sustained. Diagnostic stewardship for CDI is likely cost-saving and could decrease misdiagnosis, unnecessary antibiotic therapy, and overestimation of HO-CDI rates.
In March 2017, the New Jersey Department of Health received reports of 3 patients who developed septic arthritis after receiving intra-articular injections for osteoarthritis knee pain at the same private outpatient facility in New Jersey. The risk of septic arthritis resulting from intra-articular injection is low. However, outbreaks of septic arthritis associated with unsafe injection practices in outpatient settings have been reported.
An infection prevention assessment of the implicated facility’s practices was conducted because of the ongoing risk to public health. The assessment included an environmental inspection of the facility, staff interviews, infection prevention practice observations, and a medical record and office document review. A call for cases was disseminated to healthcare providers in New Jersey to identify patients treated at the facility who developed septic arthritis after receiving intra-articular injections.
We identified 41 patients with septic arthritis associated with intra-articular injections. Cultures of synovial fluid or tissue from 15 of these 41 case patients (37%) recovered bacteria consistent with oral flora. The infection prevention assessment of facility practices identified multiple breaches of recommended infection prevention practices, including inadequate hand hygiene, unsafe injection practices, and poor cleaning and disinfection practices. No additional cases were identified after infection prevention recommendations were implemented by the facility.
Aseptic technique is imperative when handling, preparing, and administering injectable medications to prevent microbial contamination.
This investigation highlights the importance of adhering to infection prevention recommendations. All healthcare personnel who prepare, handle, and administer injectable medications should be trained in infection prevention and safe injection practices.
A 60-year-old patient with a clinical diagnosis of schizophrenia underwent a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan related to the evaluation of isolated seizures that emerged while medicated with clozapine. Unexpectedly, the MRI scan revealed evidence of asymmetric and enlarged cerebral ventricles that were interpreted as congenital in origin. The presence of both congenital lateral ventricular asymmetry and ventriculomegaly may interact to increase risk of schizophrenia. The history and clinical features, including cognitive testing, of the illustrative patient are presented.
Benzodiazepines are widely prescribed to manage sleep disorders, anxiety and muscular tension. While providing short-term relief, continued use induces tolerance and withdrawal, and in older users, increases the risk of falls. However, long-term prescription remains common, and effective interventions are not widely available. This study developed a self-managed cognitive behaviour therapy package for cessation of benzodiazepine use delivered to participants via mail (M-CBT) and trialled its effectiveness as an adjunct to a general practitioner (GP)-managed dose reduction schedule. In the pilot trial, participants were randomly assigned to GP management with immediate or delayed M-CBT. Significant recruitment and engagement problems were experienced, and only three participants were allocated to each condition. After immediate M-CBT, two participants ceased use, while none receiving delayed treatment reduced daily intake by more than 50%. Across the sample, doses at 12 months remained significantly lower than baseline, and qualitative feedback from participants was positive. While M-CBT may have promise, improved engagement of GPs and participants is needed for this approach to substantially impact on community-wide benzodiazepine use.
The cognitive profile of early onset Parkinson’s disease (EOPD) has not been clearly defined. Mutations in the parkin gene are the most common genetic risk factor for EOPD and may offer information about the neuropsychological pattern of performance in both symptomatic and asymptomatic mutation carriers. EOPD probands and their first-degree relatives who did not have Parkinson’s disease (PD) were genotyped for mutations in the parkin gene and administered a comprehensive neuropsychological battery. Performance was compared between EOPD probands with (N = 43) and without (N = 52) parkin mutations. The same neuropsychological battery was administered to 217 first-degree relatives to assess neuropsychological function in individuals who carry parkin mutations but do not have PD. No significant differences in neuropsychological test performance were found between parkin carrier and noncarrier probands. Performance also did not differ between EOPD noncarriers and carrier subgroups (i.e., heterozygotes, compound heterozygotes/homozygotes). Similarly, no differences were found among unaffected family members across genotypes. Mean neuropsychological test performance was within normal range in all probands and relatives. Carriers of parkin mutations, whether or not they have PD, do not perform differently on neuropsychological measures as compared to noncarriers. The cognitive functioning of parkin carriers over time warrants further study. (JINS, 2011, 17, 1–10)
Serratia marcescens can cause serious infections in patients in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs), including sepsis, pneumonia, urinary tract infection, and conjunctivitis. We report the utility of genetic fingerprinting to identify, investigate, and control two distinct outbreaks of S. marcescens.
An epidemiologic investigation was performed to control two clusters of S. marcescens infections and to determine possible routes of transmission. Molecular typing by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis determined the relatedness of S. marcescens strains recovered from neonates, the environment, and the hands of healthcare workers (HCWs).
Two geographically distinct level III-IV NICUs (NICU A and NICU B) in two university-affiliated teaching hospitals in New York City.
In NICU A, one major clone, “F,” was detected among isolates recovered from four neonates and the hands of one HCW. A second predominant clone, “A,” was recovered from four sink drains and one rectal surveillance culture from an asymptomatic neonate. In NICU B, four neonates were infected with clone “D,” and three sink drains harbored clone “H.” The attributable mortality rate from bloodstream infections was 60% (3 of 5 infants). The antimicrobial susceptibilities of clone F strains varied for amikacin, cefepime, and piperacillin/tazobactam.
S. marcescens causes significant morbidity and mortality in preterm neonates. Cross-transmission via transient hand carriage of a HCW appeared to be the probable route of transmission in NICU A. Sinks did not harbor the outbreak strains. Antimicrobial susceptibility patterns did not prove to be an accurate predictor of strain relatedness for S. marcescens.
An outbreak of nosocomial ringworm involved five infants in a neonatal intensive care unit. The index case was a nurse infected with Microsporum canis by her cat. After standard infection control measures were initiated, the outbreak was resolved successfully by an interdisciplinary professional collaboration of physician and veterinary dermatologists and infection control personnel.
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