During a 6-month period, 892 positive blood cultures were detected in the Copenhagen County hospitals. 302 (34%) were regarded as contaminations, and of the remaining cases 419 (71%) were community-acquired and 171 (29%) hospital-acquired, giving incidence rates of 6.8/1,000 admissions and 2.8/1,000 admissions, respectively. Both frequency and rate of hospital-acquired bacteremia were lower compared to most other studies. E. coli was more commonly found in community-acquired infections, while coagulase-negative staphylococci were the organisms most often considered as a contaminant. The main causative organisms in hospital-acquired infections were S. aureus (n = 37) and E. coli (n = 34). The proportion of polymicrobial bacteremias in this study was lower compared to most other studies (8%). E. coli from hospital-acquired infections were resistant to ampicillin in 42% of cases, but other Enterobacteriaceae showed higher percentage of resistance to beta-lactam antibiotics. S. aureus was penicillin-resistant in 92% of cases, but no methicillin-resistant strains were isolated. The frequency of antibiotic resistance was low compared to reports from other countries. A total of 136 hospital-acquired cases were followed prospectively. 61% of the patients were male and 46% were > or = 60 years of age. Most patients had predisposing diseases, 90% had foreign body and/or recent surgery performed, and 74 (54%) had an intraveneous catheter. The portal of entry was known in 132 (97%) of the cases, the most common being the urinary tract (42%), followed by an intravenous catheter (30%). The prevalence of urinary tract catheters gave an increased number of cases with E. coli bacteremia. The mortality was 16%.
A retrospective survey of non-typhoid Salmonella bacteraemia in the period 1984 to 1988 was carried out by the five departments of clinical microbiology in Greater Copenhagen. A total of 168 patients were identified. A gradual increase was observed from 11 cases in 1984 to 58 cases in 1988. The corresponding incidence per 100,000 inhabitants in Copenhagen rose from 0.9 in 1984 to 5.0 in 1988. During the same period the total registered incidence of human Salmonella infections in Denmark increased from 17.6 to 67.4 per 100,000 inhabitants. The serotype most often isolated from bacteraemic patients was Salmonella dublin followed by Salmonella enteritidis and Salmonella typhimurium. Salmonella dublin demonstrated enhanced invasive and pathogenic properties. Predisposing factors were present in 56% of the patients; the most common was malignant disease. A fatal or complicated course of the bacteraemia was observed more frequently in patients with underlying diseases than in persons who had previously been healthy. A total of 17% of the patients died; one-fifth of these had a ruptured aortic aneurysm. It is concluded that the substantial increase in the number of cases and the often serious course taken by the infection demonstrate a need for increased efforts at prophylaxis.
The epidemiology of meningococcal disease in Denmark has changed in recent years, with a rise in the number of cases in the 14-18 year age group. During the last decade 80 per cent of the meningococci belonged to Group B and 20 per cent to Group C. The treatment has followed the lines of the recommendations issued by the Rigshospitalet but some hospital departments have now chosen other preparations, as appears from the study presented in the article.
BACKGROUND: Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia (SAB) acquired in hospitals continues to be a frequent and serious complication to hospitalization, and no previous case-control studies dealing with risk factors of this severe disease are available. METHODS: Based on a 1-year prospective analysis, the data from all patients with hospital-acquired SAB admitted to 4 hospitals in Copenhagen County, Denmark, from May 1, 1994, through April 30, 1995, were evaluated. Eighty-five patients with hospital-acquired SAB were matched to 85 control patients with a similar primary diagnosis at admission (matched controls). Of these, 62 patients with hospital-acquired SAB were compared with 118 other patients with a similar time of admission, who were randomly selected with no clinical evidence of SAB (unmatched controls). RESULTS: The incidence of hospital-acquired SAB was 0.71 per 1000 hospital admissions. The presence of a central venous catheter (odds ratio, 6.9; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.8-17.0), anemia (odds ratio, 3.3; 95% CI, 1.4-7.6), and hyponatremia (odds ratio, 3.3; 95% CI, 1.5-7.0) was significantly associated with hospital-acquired SAB in a conditional and a usual logistic regression analysis. Nasal carriage was not an independent risk factor, but nasal carriers among patients in surgery (odds ratio, 4.0; 95% CI, 1.3-13.0) had a significantly higher risk for hospital-acquired SAB compared with matched and unmatched controls. The presence of hospital-acquired SAB increased the mortality rate 2.4-fold (95% CI, 1.1-5.2). CONCLUSIONS: The presence of a central venous catheter is an important risk factor, and hyponatremia and anemia are associated with the development of hospital-acquired SAB. Furthermore, hospital-acquired SAB in itself increases mortality.
A three-month prospective surveillance study was undertaken in four dialysis centres to establish the prevalence of Staphylococcus aureus carriage in a Danish population of patients on haemodialysis (HD) or on continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD). General data such as sex, age, diagnosis, number of months in dialysis, hospital and ward were registered on a precoded form. Standardized nose and four skin swabs (axillae, groins, perineum) were performed on the first day of the survey. After one and two months, nose swabs were collected. Infections were registered and cultures were sent for phage-typing together with the S. aureus strains isolated from the swabs; 59.5% of HD patients and 51.2% of CAPD patients carried S. aureus. Permanent carriage was most frequent (P