FDA, CDC warn hospitals of multistate Burkholderia bacteria outbreak

The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration are sounding the alarm on Burkholderia cepacia, bacteria causing infections primarily in ventilated patients without cystic fibrosis who are being treated in intensive care units.

The bacteria usually trigger infections that are resistant to certain antibiotics, making them life-threatening. The CDC reports the outbreak may be linked to a contaminated liquid docusate product, and recommends until more information is available hospitals should refrain from using such products in patients who are immunosuppressed, have chronic respiratory illness, or are critically ill or ventilated.

"Institutions with non-cystic fibrosis patients in whom there are B. cepacia infections should sequester all liquid docusate products," the CDC statement reads.

The CDC urges providers to report all cases of B. cepacia infection to local and state health authorities, and has promised an update to its initial announcement this week.

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