Antibiotic resistance more prevalent in device-related infections, study finds

Healthcare-associated infections were more likely to be antibiotic-resistant when related to medical devices than surgical procedures, according to a report from the CDC's National Healthcare Safety Network published Nov. 25 in Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology.

Researchers analyzed 2015-17 CDC and NHSN data from central line-associated bloodstream infections, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, ventilator-associated events and surgical site infections in adult patients at 5,626 facilities, most of which were general acute care hospitals. 

The three most commonly reported bacteria were E. coli (18 percent), Staphylococcus aureus (12 percent) and Klebsiella spp (9 percent). Pathogens varied by location and infection type, but antibiotic resistance for most bacteria was significantly higher among device-associated HAIs than among SSIs. For example, Enterococcus faecium in VRE infections was resistant to antibiotics in 55.6 percent of SSIs, while antibiotic resistance rates were 26.5 percent higher for device-related infections, at 82.1 percent. 

Long-term acute care hospitals had significantly higher rates of antibiotic resistance than general hospital wards.  

A related study of pediatric healthcare-associated infections presented similar findings.  

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