Bacterial infection profiles in lung cancer patients with febrile neutropenia.

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Bacterial infection profiles in lung cancer patients with febrile neutropenia.

BMC Infect Dis. 2011;11:183

Authors: Lanoix JP, Pluquet E, Lescure FX, Bentayeb H, Lecuyer E, Boutemy M, Dumont P, Jounieaux V, Schmit JL, Dayen C, Douadi Y

BACKGROUND: The chemotherapy used to treat lung cancer causes febrile neutropenia in 10 to 40% of patients. Although most episodes are of undetermined origin, an infectious etiology can be suspected in 30% of cases. In view of the scarcity of data on lung cancer patients with febrile neutropenia, we performed a retrospective study of the microbiological characteristics of cases recorded in three medical centers in the Picardy region of northern France.
METHODS: We analyzed the medical records of lung cancer patients with neutropenia (neutrophil count < 500/mm(3)) and fever (temperature > 38.3°C).
RESULTS: The study included 87 lung cancer patients with febrile neutropenia (mean age: 64.2). Two thirds of the patients had metastases and half had poor performance status. Thirty-three of the 87 cases were microbiologically documented. Gram-negative bacteria (mainly enterobacteriaceae from the urinary and digestive tracts) were identified in 59% of these cases. Staphylococcus species (mainly S. aureus) accounted for a high proportion of the identified Gram-positive bacteria. Bacteremia accounted for 60% of the microbiologically documented cases of fever. 23% of the blood cultures were positive. 14% of the infections were probably hospital-acquired and 14% were caused by multidrug-resistant strains. The overall mortality rate at day 30 was 33% and the infection-related mortality rate was 16.1%. Treatment with antibiotics was successful in 82.8% of cases. In a multivariate analysis, predictive factors for treatment failure were age >60 and thrombocytopenia < 20000/mm(3).
CONCLUSION: Gram-negative species were the most frequently identified bacteria in lung cancer patients with febrile neutropenia. Despite the success of antibiotic treatment and a low-risk neutropenic patient group, mortality is high in this particular population.

PMID: 21707992 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]