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To describe the frequency, characteristics, and exposure associated with influenza in hospitalized patients in a Toronto hospital
Prospective data collected for consenting patients with laboratory-confirmed influenza and a retrospective review of infection control charts for roommates of cases over 3 influenza seasons
Of the 661 patients with influenza (age range: 1 week–103 years), 557 were placed on additional precautions upon admission. Of 104 with symptoms detected after admission, 57 cases were community onset and 47 were nosocomial (10 nosocomial were part of outbreaks). A total of 78 cases were detected after admission exposing 143 roommates. Among roommates tested for influenza after exposure, no roommates of community-onset cases and 2 of 16 roommates of nosocomial cases were diagnosed with influenza. Of 637 influenza-infected patients, 25% and 57% met influenza-like illness definitions from the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), respectively, and 70.3% met the Provincial Infectious Diseases Advisory Committee (PIDAC) febrile respiratory illness definition. Among the 56 patients with community-onset influenza detected after admission, only 13%, 23%, and 34%, met PHAC, CDC, and PIDAC classifications, respectively.
In a setting with extensive screening and testing for influenza, 1 in 6 patients with influenza was not diagnosed until patients and healthcare workers had been exposed for >24 hours. Only 30% of patients with community-onset influenza detected after admission met the Ontario definition intended to identify cases, hampering efforts to prevent patient and healthcare worker exposures and reinforcing the need for prevention through vaccination.
To measure transmission frequencies and risk factors for household acquisition of community-associated and healthcare-associated (HA-) methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
Prospective cohort study from October 4, 2008, through December 3, 2012.
Seven acute care hospitals in or near Toronto, Canada.
Total of 99 MRSA-colonized or MRSA-infected case patients and 183 household contacts.
Baseline interviews were conducted, and surveillance cultures were collected monthly for 3 months from household members, pets, and 8 prespecified high-use environmental locations. Isolates underwent pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec typing.
Overall, of 183 household contacts 89 (49%) were MRSA colonized, with 56 (31%) detected at baseline. MRSA transmission from index case to contacts negative at baseline occurred in 27 (40%) of 68 followed-up households. Strains were identical within households. The transmission risk for HA-MRSA was 39% compared with 40% (P=.95) for community-associated MRSA. HA-MRSA index cases were more likely to be older and not practice infection control measures (P=.002–.03). Household acquisition risk factors included requiring assistance and sharing bath towels (P=.001–.03). Environmental contamination was identified in 78 (79%) of 99 households and was more common in HA-MRSA households.
Household transmission of community-associated and HA-MRSA strains was common and the difference in transmission risk was not statistically significant.
Community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is an increasingly common cause of skin and soft tissue infection (SSTI) worldwide. The prevalence of MRSA in SSTIs across Canada has not been well described. Studies in the United States have shown significant geographic variability in the prevalence of MRSA. This study characterizes the geographic prevalence and microbiology of MRSA in patients presenting to Canadian emergency departments with SSTIs.
Using a prospective, observational design, we enrolled patients with acute purulent SSTIs presenting to 17 hospital emergency departments and 2 community health centres (spanning 6 Canadian provinces) between July 1, 2008, and April 30, 2009. Eligible patients were those whose wound cultures grew S. aureus. MRSA isolates were characterized by antimicrobial susceptibility testing and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. All patients were subjected to a structured chart audit, and patients whose wound swabs grew MRSA were contacted by telephone to gather detailed information regarding risk factors for MRSA infection, history of illness, and outcomes.
Of the 1,353 S. aureus–positive encounters recorded, 431 (32%) grew MRSA and 922 (68%) wounds grew methicillin-susceptible S. aureus. We observed significant variation in both the prevalence of MRSA (11–100%) and the proportion of community-associated strains of MRSA (0– 100%) across our study sites, with a significantly higher prevalence of MRSA in western Canada.
MRSA continues to emerge across Canada, and the prevalence of MRSA in SSTIs across Canada is variable and higher than previously expected.
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