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The purpose of this study was to assess the epidemiology and outcomes of enterococcal bacteraemia. A retrospective review of demographic, microbiological and clinical data in patients 16 years of age and over with Enterococcus faecalis or E. faecium bacteraemia at Auckland City Hospital, New Zealand, from June 2002 to May 2007 was carried out. A total of 212 patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria, with 205 being included in the analysis. E. faecalis accounted for 86% (176/205) and E. faecium 14% (29/205) of the patients. Amoxycillin resistance occurred in 69% (20/29) of E. faecium isolates. High-level gentamicin resistance was present in 38% (65/171) of E. faecalis isolates and 25% (7/28) of E. faecium isolates (P = NS). No vancomycin-resistant enterococci were isolated. Healthcare association was present in 73% (149/205) of patients. Co-morbidities were present in 86% (176/205) of patients. The 7-day mortality was 13% (27/205) and the 30-day mortality 25% (52/205). On multivariate analysis, the 7-day mortality was statistically significantly associated with cirrhosis and shorter intravenous amoxycillin therapy. The 30-day mortality was statistically significantly associated with cirrhosis, malignancy, E. faecium bacteraemia and not receiving active antimicrobial therapy. No statistically significant association between high-level gentamicin resistance and mortality was demonstrated on multivariate analysis. Enterococcal bacteraemia occurs in a co-morbid, healthcare-exposed population. Associated mortality is high, and is associated with severe underlying disease, E. faecium bacteraemia and treatment factors.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Enterococcus faeciumIncreased Antimicrobial ResistanceHarmful
Enterococcus faeciumIncreased Mortality RateHarmful
Enterococcus faeciumModerate High-Level Gentamicin ResistanceHarmful

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