We present clinical cases, which underline some difficulties in diagnosis and treatment of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Case report #1 shows a patient who avoided clinical follow-up for HCV until the development of hepatocellular carcinoma. In this patient, non-invasive procedures did not allow to make a differential diagnosis between hydatidosis and hepatocellular carcinoma but diagnosis was only made with liver biopsy.
In the case report #2, 24-week treatment with peg-interferon α2 and ribavirin was successfully administered to a HCV genotype-1b infected patient. Shortening HCV treatment did not impair sustained virological response, probably because HCV RNA was low (< 200,000 IU/l) at baseline.
Lastly, a case series of patients (#3-6) with hemoglobinopathies is described. Sustained virological response after peg-interferon α2 and ribavirin was achieved in 2 out of 4 patients. While no severe treatment limiting hematological effects were encountered, patients needed more frequent blood transfusions. Thus, new anti-HCV schemes without peg-interferon and ribavirin are urgently needed.
HCC; Hydatidosis; Echinococcosis; HCV; Interferon; Thalassemia; Sickle cell disease
Limited information is available regarding the clinical efficacy of azithromycin for the treatment of enteric fever due to fluoroquinolone-resistant Salmonella Typhi and Salmonella Paratyphi among travelers returning to their home countries.
We report a case of a 52-year-old Japanese man who returned from India, who developed a fever of 39°C with no accompanying symptoms 10 days after returning to Japan from a 1-month business trip to Delhi, India. His blood culture results were positive for Salmonella Paratyphi A. He was treated with 14 days of ceftriaxone, after which he remained afebrile for 18 days before his body temperature again rose to 39°C with no apparent symptoms. He was then empirically given 500 mg of azithromycin, but experienced clinical and microbiological failure of azithromycin treatment for enteric fever due to Salmonella Paratyphi A. However, the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of azithromycin was not elevated (8 mg/L). He was again given ceftriaxone for 14 days with no signs of recurrence during the follow-up.
There are limited data available for the treatment of enteric fever using azithromycin in travelers from developed countries who are not immune to the disease, and thus, careful follow-up is necessary. In our case, the low azithromycin dose might have contributed the treatment failure. Additional clinical data are needed to determine the rate of success, MIC, and contributing factors for success and/or failure of azithromycin treatment for both Salmonella Typhi and Salmonella Paratyphi infections.
Salmonella Paratyphi; Enteric fever; Azithromycin; Treatment failure; Returned traveler
Rapid diagnostic tests play a pivotal role in the early diagnosis of malaria where microscopy or polymerase chain reaction are not immediately available.
We report the case of a 39 year old traveler to Canada who presented with fever, headache, and abdominal pain after visiting friends and relatives in India. While in India, the individual was not ill and had no signs or symptoms of malaria. Laboratory testing upon his return to Canada identified a false positive malaria rapid diagnostic (BinaxNOW® malaria) result for P. falciparum with coincident Salmonella Typhi bacteraemia without rheumatoid or autoimmune factors. Rapid diagnostic test false positivity for malaria coincided with the presence or absence of Salmonella Typhi in the blood.
Clinicians should be aware that Salmonella Typhi infection may result in a false positive malaria rapid diagnostic test. The mechanism of this cross-reactivity is not clear.
Malaria; False positive; Rapid diagnostic test; Typhoid
Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is an emerging infectious disease caused by a novel bunyavirus (SFTSV) in China. Humans of all ages living in endemic areas have high risk of acquiring SFTS. Most clinical data so far have been from adults and no clinical study was available from children yet. The present study identified four SFTSV infected children through hospital based surveillance. A prospective observational study was performed to obtain their clinical and laboratory characteristics.
The patients’ age ranged from 4–15 years old and two were male. On hospitalization, fever, malaise and gastrointestinal syndromes were the most commonly presenting symptoms. Hemorrhagic symptoms or neurological manifestation was not recorded in any of the four pediatric patients. Hematological abnormalities at admission into hospital included leucopenia (4 cases), thrombocytopenia (1 case) and bicytopenia (1 case). The abnormal parameters included elevated aminotransferase (1 case), alanine transaminase (2 case), and lactate dehydrogenase (3 case). Laboratory parameters indicative of renal damage was not observed during the hospitalization. All the patients recovered well without sequelae being observed.
Compared with adults, pediatric patients with SFTSV infection seem to have less vague subjective complaints and less aggressive clinical course. Thrombocytopenia is suggested to be used less rigorously in recognizing SFTSV infection in pediatric patients, especially at early phase of disease.
Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome; Bunyavirus; Children
Q fever is caused by the intracellular bacterium Coxiella burnetii. Initial infection can present as acute Q fever, while a minority of infected individuals develops chronic Q fever endocarditis or vascular infection months to years after initial infection. Serology is an important diagnostic tool for both acute and chronic Q fever. However, since immunosuppressive drugs may hamper the humoral immune response, diagnosis of Q fever might be blurred when these drugs are used.
A 71-year-old Caucasian male was diagnosed with symptomatic acute Q fever (based on positive C. burnetii PCR followed by seroconversion) while using anti-tumor necrosis factor-α (anti-TNFα) drugs for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). He was treated for two weeks with moxifloxacin. After 24 months of follow-up, the diagnosis of probable chronic Q fever was established based on increasing anti-C. burnetii phase I IgG antibody titres in a immunocompromised patient combined with clinical suspicion of endocarditis. At the time of chronic Q fever diagnosis, he had been treated with anti B-cell therapy for 16 months. Antibiotic therapy consisting of 1.5 years doxycycline and hydroxychloroquine was started and successfully completed and no signs of relapse were seen after more than one year of follow-up.
The use of anti-TNFα agents for RA in the acute phase of Q fever did not hamper the C. burnetii-specific serological response as measured by immunofluorescence assay. However, in the presented case, an intact humoral response did not prevent progression to probable chronic C. burnetii infection, most likely because essential cellular immune responses were suppressed during the acute phase of the infection. Despite the start of anti-B-cell therapy with rituximab after the acute Q fever episode, an increase in anti-C. burnetii phase I IgG antibodies was observed, supporting the notion that C. burnetii specific CD20-negative memory B-cells are responsible for this rise in antibody titres.
Q fever; Coxiella burnetii; Immunosuppression; Rheumatoid arthritis; Tumor necrosis factor-α; Anti-TNFα; Etanercept; Adalimumab; Rituximab; Serology
Condylomata acuminata (genital warts) is the most common sexually transmitted disease, and imiquimod is the sole FDA-approved medication for combating this condition. Vitiligo associated with imiquimod treatment of condylomata acuminata is rare.
A 28-year-old male with condylomata acuminata of the penis presented to our clinic. After removing his condylomata acuminata, we advised him to use imiquimod 5% cream to prevent relapse. When he presented to our clinic again about 12 weeks later, he complained of vitiligo patches on his penis and scrotum. Physical examination showed vitiligo patches involving the glans penis, shaft of the penis, and scrotum, and remaining pigmented areas within the plaques of vitiligo.
A skin biopsy of the dorsal surface of the penis showed a complete absence of melanocytes and melanin granules in the basal layer; the dermis was normal.
This is the first report of a case of imiquimod-induced vitiligo diagnosed by histopathological examination. This adverse effect should be considered when dermatologists prescribe this medication.
Condylomata acuminata; Imiquimod; Vitiligo
Appendicitis occurs with increased frequency in HIV infected compared to HIV uninfected persons. CMV-related appendicitis specifically presents with typical appendicitis symptoms including surgical abdomen, fever and leukocytosis and may have a more severe course with higher mortality than other types of infective appendicitis. We report the first case of CMV appendicitis as a manifestation of Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome (IRIS).
The patient was a 38 year old woman with a recent diagnosis of HIV infection who complained of right lower quadrant pain, anorexia, nausea and fevers two weeks after initiating antiretroviral therapy. Acute appendicitis was suspected and the patient underwent an appendectomy. Pathologic examination of the resected appendiceal tissue demonstrated inflammation with perforation and cytopathic changes typical of CMV that were positive for CMV by immunostain. This presentation of CMV abruptly after antiretroviral therapy initiation with a pronounced cellular infiltration of the tissue, is consistent with CMV-IRIS presenting as appendicitis.
Appendicitis can be a rare manifestation of CMV-IRIS in HIV-infected patients who start antiretroviral therapy. Evaluation of appendiceal tissue for cytopathic changes and CMV should be considered in acute appendicitis in HIV infected persons.
Cytomegalovirus; Immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome; Opportunistic infections; HIV
Severe leptospirosis occurs mainly in a tropical environment and includes icterus, acute renal failure and hemorrhages. These bleedings, which are mainly a consequence of acute homeostatic disturbances, can also reveal simultaneous diseases. Coinfections with other tropical diseases have been previously reported during leptospirosis. To our knowledge, invasive amebiasis, which can induce gastrointestinal bleedings, has never been described in the course of severe leptospirosis.
In this report, we describe a case of a 60 year-old man living in Reunion Island (Indian Ocean, France) admitted to our intensive care unit for severe Leptospira interrogans serovar icterohaemorrhagiae infection with neurological, renal, liver and hematological involvement. Two lower gastrointestinal bleedings occurred 7 and 15 days after admission. The first episode was promoted by hemostatic disturbances while the second bleeding occurred during low-dose heparin therapy. Colonoscopy revealed a pseudo-tumoral inflammatory mass of the recto-sigmoid junction. Histological examination found trophozoites inside mucinous exudate suggestive of Entamoeba histolytica. Amoebic serology was strongly positive whereas careful detection of cysts or trophozoites on saline-wet mount was negative in three consecutive samples of stools. Amoxicillin followed by metronidazole therapy, combined with supportive care, led to an improvement in the clinical and biological patient’s condition and endoscopic appearances.
Clinicians should be aware that gastrointestinal bleeding during severe leptospirosis could not solely be the consequences of hemostatic disturbances. Careful endoscopic evaluation that may reveal curable coinfections should also be considered.
Leptospirosis; Weil’s disease acute renal failure; Amebiasis; Coinfection
Renal transplant recipients are at high risk of developing multiple infections, often concomitantly because of their immunocompromised status. Post renal transplant infections are often elusive and require extensive evaluation for proper diagnosis and treatment. A high index of suspicion is required and an attempt should be made to confirm the microbiological diagnosis from each site involved to rule out multiple infections.
We report a 50-year-old female, a renal allograft recipient who presented with left hemiplegia, esophageal ulcers and fever 3 months after her transplant. Esophageal biopsy revealed Cytomegalovirus (CMV) inclusions and the whole blood quantitative CMV polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was positive. Neuroimaging showed a brain abscess, stereotactic biopsy from which revealed Scedosporium apiospermum on fungal culture. Her tacrolimus and mycophenolate were stopped and she was managed with intravenous ganciclovir and voriconazole. With these measures, she showed marked improvement in her general and neurological condition. Two months later, she developed recurrence of fever with dry cough. Radiological investigation revealed a cavitating lung lesion, a needle aspiration from which demonstrated acid-fast bacilli. She was started on antituberculous treatment. With these measures, she recovered completely and maintained good graft function despite being on only prednisolone 10 mg once a day.
Although CMV disease is not uncommon in the first three months post transplant, Scedosporium is a rare cause of brain abscess. On the other hand, tuberculosis is common in transplant recipients, especially in developing countries, like India. However, this is the first case report of occurrence of these three infections in the same patient, demonstrating the importance of a good microbiological work-up from each site involved in immunosuppressed subjects.
Cytomegalovirus; Scedosporium apiospermum; Renal transplant; Brain abscess; Post transplant tuberculosis
Lachancea fermentati is an environmental yeast that is also used in the fermentation of alcoholic drinks. It has not previously been described as a human pathogen although the closely related yeast, Saccharomyces boulardii, can cause fungemia. Here we report a case of L. fermentati acting as a pathogen in a septic patient with cultures positive from blood, peritoneal fluid, bile, and sputum.
A 36 year-old Caucasian man was hospitalized with acute alcoholic hepatitis complicated by Escherichia coli spontaneous bacterial peritonitis. Three days after admission, he developed new fevers with sepsis requiring mechanical ventilation and vasopressor support. He was found to have a bowel perforation. Cultures from blood, peritoneal fluid, and sputum grew a difficult-to-identify yeast. Micafungin was started empirically. On hospital day 43 the yeast was identified as L. fermentati with low minimum inhibitory concentrations (by Epsilometer test) to all antifungals tested. Micafungin was changed to fluconazole to complete a 3-month course of therapy. Serial peritoneal fluid cultures remained positive for 31 days. One year after his initial hospitalization the patient had ongoing cirrhosis but had recovered from fungemia.
This case demonstrates the need for clinicians to consider host factors when interpreting culture results with normally non-pathogenic organisms. In this immunocompromised host L. fermentati caused disseminated disease. We believe his hobby of brewing alcohol led to colonization with L. fermentati, which then resulted in invasive disease when the opportunity arose.
Lachancea fermentati; Fungemia; Opportunistic pathogen
Penicillium marneffei is the only dimorphic member of the genus and is an emerging pathogenic fungus that can cause fatal systemic mycosis. Penicillium marneffei disseminates hematogenously to other locations. Penicillium marneffei infection most commonly involves the skin, lungs, and reticuloendothelial system, including the bone, bone marrow, joints, lymph nodes, pericardium, liver, and spleen. Involvement of the mesenteric and central nervous systems has also been reported. Infection involving the trachea has not been previously reported.
We herein report a previously healthy 28-year-old male farmer from Guangxi Province without HIV who became infected with P. marneffei. The infection primarily affected the trachea, resulting in structural damage to the cartilage, tracheal stenosis, and tracheal absence. The infection also involved the lungs and lymph nodes. After antifungal treatment and surgery, his symptoms, signs, and lung imaging findings showed significant improvement. This is the first such case report.
Penicillium marneffei infection in normal hosts is characterized by an insidious onset, various clinical manifestations, and common misdiagnosis, leading to high mortality rates. Penicillium marneffei hematogenously disseminates throughout the whole body. This is the first reported case of P. marneffei infection involving the main trachea with subsequent structural damage to the tracheal cartilage, severe tracheostenosis, and tracheal absence.
Penicillium marneffei; Trachea involvement; Tracheostenosis; Tracheal absence
Norovirus infection is increasingly recognized as an important cause of persistent gastroenteritis in immunocompromised hosts and can be a potential cause of morbidity in these populations.
Here, we report a case of norovirus-related chronic diarrhea occurring in a 62-year-old immunocompromised patient treated with alemtuzumab for chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Despite different therapeutic strategies including tapering of immunosuppressive therapy and immunoglobulin administration, diarrhea unfortunately did not resolve and lasted for a total of more than twelve weeks with prolonged norovirus fecal excretion.
Norovirus infection can occur in the setting of alemtuzumab treatment, even as a single agent, and should be included in the differential diagnoses of acute and chronic diarrhea in these immunocompromised patients. Although the administration of oral immunoglobulin has been described as a promising efficient therapy, this was not the case in our patient. Clinical trials are thus clearly warranted to better define risk factors and efficient therapies for norovirus infection in immunocompromised populations.
Norovirus; Diarrhea; Immunosuppression; Alemtuzumab; Chronic lymphocytic leukemia
Bacterial infection is a well-known risk of breast implant surgery. It is typically caused by bacterial skin flora, specifically Staphylococcus aureus and the coagulase negative staphylococci. There have been infrequent reports of breast implant infection caused by the atypical mycobacteria, of which Mycobacterium canariasense not yet reported in the literature.
This report summarizes the case of a female patient who underwent mastectomy followed by bilateral breast augmentation and presented approximately three years later with clinical evidence of infected breast prosthesis by Mycobacterium canariasense. One year after thoroughly follow-up, appropriate antibiotherapy and the change of the infected prosthesis, the patient presented no signs of reinfection.
Our case demonstrates that Mycobacterium canariasense should be considered as a new potential cause of infected breast prosthesis.
Antibiotherapy; Conservative treatment; Mastectomy; Mycobacterium canariasense; Prosthesis; Sparing
The prevalence of Old World Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in the Mediterranean region is increasing and in Southern Europe often caused by Leishmania infantum. Spontaneous healing of cutaneous leishmaniasis is commonly observed, especially if caused by L. major, whereas L. infantum associated lesions have been reported with longer disease duration and decreased tendency for self-limitation, however, available information is sparse.
We report the case of an otherwise healthy woman from Southern Spain who presented with a seven years persistent, non-healing, painless, central ulcerated, nodular cutaneous lesion with a diameter of 2 cm of the forearm. Cutaneous leishmaniasis was diagnosed by smear and histology, showing large amounts of leishmania amastigotes in subepidermal histiocytes and extensive lymphocyte and plasma cell inflammation. L. infantum as the causative pathogen was confirmed by restriction fragment length polymorphism and microsatellite-PCR. Systemic or visceral involvement was excluded by negative leishmania serology and clinical presentation, relevant concomitant diseases or immunosuppression were excluded including quantification of immunoglobulin levels and lymphocyte phenotyping. Topical and systemic anti-infectious treatment options, often limited in terms of efficacy, tolerability and long lasting treatment duration, were considered. Treatment was successfully performed by surgical extraction in local anaesthesia only.
To our knowledge this is the longest reported duration of a L. infantum associated cutaneous leishmaniasis indicating a potential long lasting natural evolution of the disease in an otherwise healthy and immunocompetent patient, however, high parasite density may have reflected a lack of a L. infantum specific immune response. Complete surgical extraction can be successfully performed as treatment.
Cutaneous leishmaniasis; Leishmania infantum; surgical treatment
Recently, necrotizing fasciitis has been reported in patients treated with bevacizumab, usually secondary to wound healing complications, gastrointestinal perforations, or fistula formation. The risk of invasive Haemophilus influenzae type b infection is significantly increased in immunocompromised hosts. However, necrotizing fasciitis due to Haemophilus influenzae type b in a patient treated with combined bevacizumab and chemotherapy has not been previously reported.
A 59-year-old woman was admitted to the intensive care unit after sudden onset of fever, chills, and right thigh pain. She received chemotherapy with fluorouracil, irinotecan, and bevacizumab for colon cancer 10 days prior to admission. The advancing erythematous margin and her worsening clinical condition prompted us to suspect necrotizing fasciitis and consult the orthopedics department for a fascia biopsy and debridement. Surgical exploration revealed a murky dishwater-colored pus exudate from the incision site and the lack of a shiny appearance of the fascia that also suggested necrotizing fasciitis. After 2 days, the final results of the blood and exudate cultures confirmed the presence of Haemophilus influenzae type b. A diagnosis of necrotizing fasciitis due to Haemophilus influenzae type b was made. The patient required recurrent surgical debridement and drainage, but she recovered from the septic shock.
We report a case of necrotizing fasciitis due to Haemophilus influenzae type b in a patient without injury and with rectal cancer treated with combined bevacizumab and chemotherapy. Physicians should consider invasive Haemophilus influenzae type b disease in the presence of necrotizing fasciitis in patients treated with this combined treatment modality.
Necrotizing fasciitis; Haemophilus influenzae type b; Bevacizumab
Cardiac device-related endocarditis is a very rare clinical manifestation of S. dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis disease. This pathogen is a common cause of cellulitis. We here report two cases of cardiac device-related endocarditis due to Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis. Blood cultures yielded this pathogen and both patients had recurrent bacteremia. Transthoracic and transesophageal echocardiography revealed lead vegetations. This is a new description of this pathogen to cause cardiac device-related endocarditis.
The first case is a 79-year-old finnish woman who received a dual-chamber pacemaker for intermittent complete heart block in April 2011. She had three episodes of S. dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis bacteremia. During first episode she had arthritis of glenohumeral joint. Focus was unknown in the second and third bacteremic episodes. During third bacteremic episode transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) revealed lead vegetation. Patient underwent successful complete system removal. She was treated with benzylpenicillin four million IU six times a day for four weeks intravenously. The second case is a 92-year-old finnish man. A dual-chamber pacemaker was implanted on June 2012 due to total heart block. He had recurrent S. dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis bacteremia with cellulitis. During the second bacteremic episode transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) was performed because of persistent fever. Echocardiography revealed lead vegetation. Abdominal CT revealed also an abscess in the psoas region. This elderly patient was very fragile, and the pacemaker system was not extracted. Therapy was continued with benzylpenicillin four million IU six times a day for six weeks intravenously and thereafter suppressive treatment with amoksisillin 500 mg three times a day was initiated.
Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis (group C and G streptococci) seldom cause cardiac device endocarditis. Both patients had recurrent bacteremia of S. dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis and echocardiography revealed cardiac device-related endocarditis. These cases emphasize the importance of considering endocarditis in elderly persons having cardiac devices together with the presence of unexplained bacteremia, fever without focus or persistent fever.
Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis; Group G streptococci; Cardiac device; Endocarditis; Lead extraction
Anaerobes are a major component of gut flora. They play an important role in the pathogenesis of infections resulting from breaches in mucus membranes. Because of the difficulties in cultivating and identifying it, their role continues to be undermined. The purpose of this paper is to report a case of Prevotella loescheii bacteremic skin and soft tissue infection and review the literature.
A 42-year-old Caucasian man was admitted for an elective bariatric surgery. A lengthy intensive care unit stay and buttocks decubitus ulcers complicated his post-operative course. After being transferred to a long-term care facility, the decubitus ulcer became secondarily infected with multiple bacteria including P. loescheii; an anaerobe that grew in blood and wound cultures. The patient was treated successfully with aggressive surgical debridement, antibiotics and subsequent wound care.
P. loescheii colonizes the gut and plays an important role in periodontal infections. In rare occasions and under suitable circumstances, it can infect skin and soft tissues as well as joints. Given the difficulties in isolating anaerobes in the microbiology lab, considering this bacterium alongside other anaerobes in infections of devitalized tissue is indicated even if cultures were reported negative.
Anaerobe; Bacteremia; Prevotella loescheii
Most HIV infected patients will develop some sort of neurologic involvement of the disease throughout their lives, usually in advanced stages. Neurologic symptoms may occur in acute HIV infection but myelopathy in this setting is rare. Up until this date, only two cases of transverse myelitis as a manifestation of acute HIV infection have been reported in the literature. Therapeutic approach in these patients is not well defined.
A 35 year-old male Caucasian recently returned from the tropics presented to our hospital with urinary retention and acute paraparesis. After extensive diagnostic workup he was diagnosed with acute HIV infection presenting as transverse myelitis. Full neurologic recovery was observed without the use of anti-retroviral therapy.
Acute spinal cord disorders are challenging, as they present a wide array of differential diagnosis and may lead to devastating sequelae. Timely and rigorous diagnostic workup is of the utmost importance when managing these cases. Clinicians should be aware of the protean manifestations of acute HIV infection, including central nervous system involvement, and have a low threshold for HIV screening.
Transverse myelitis; HIV; Acute infection
Periprosthetic joint infections (PJI) are often treated by two stage exchange with the use of an antibiotic impregnated spacer. Most of the two-stage exchange algorithms recommend the implantation of an antibiotic-impregnated spacer during the first stage for a period of 2–24 weeks before reimplantation of the new prosthesis. For the spacer to have a therapeutic effect, the local antibiotic concentration must be greater than the minimal inhibition concentration (MIC) against the pathogens causing the PJI. It must remain so for the entire spacer period, otherwise recurrence of infection or resistances might occur. The question as to whether a sufficient concentration of antibiotics in vivo is reached for the entire spacer period has not been answered satisfactorily.
We here present a case of a histologically confirmed chronic PJI 20 month after primary arthroplasty. The primary knee arthroplasty was performed due to osteoarthritis of the joint. Initial assessment did not detect a causative pathogen, and two stage exchange with a vancomycin-gentamycin impregnated spacer was performed. At the time of reimplantation, sonication of the explanted spacer revealed a multi-resistant strain of staphylococcus epidermidis on the device and in the joint. Adaption of the therapy and prolonged treatment successfully eradicated the infection.
According to the authors’ knowledge, the case presented here confirms for the first time the surface contamination (proven through sonication) of a vancomycin-/gentamicin- impregnated Vancogenx®-spacer with a MRSE after ten weeks of implantation.
This case study demonstrates the difficulties still associated with the diagnostics of PJI and the published different two stage treatment regimes with the use of antibiotic impregnated spacers.
Tenofovir is a widely used antiviral drug for the treatment of HIV and HBV infection. Although its side effects on renal function and bone metabolism are well known, there are no reports on focal bone lesions caused by this drug. Our case suggests this new, unusual but important scenario.
We report on a 46-year-old HIV-positive man treated with an antiretroviral regimen containing tenofovir who suddenly developed localized inflammatory bone lesions. The examinations performed ruled out all the disorders commonly associated with this clinical pattern, and the patient’s conditions improved only after the suspension of tenofovir.
The case study suggests a rare but severe adverse event, which should be taken into account when physicians treat HIV-positive patients with focal inflammatory bone lesions
HIV; Tenofovir; Bone lesions
Biological agents such as tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitors are known to cause mycobacterium infections. Here, we report a disseminated non-tuberculosis case caused by TNF-α inhibitor therapy and a probable paradoxical response to antimycobacterial therapy.
A 68-year-old man with relapsing polychondritis was refractory to glucocorticoid therapy; adalimumab was therefore administered in combination with oral glucocorticoids. Treatment with 40 mg of adalimumab led to rapid improvement of his clinical manifestations. The administration of tacrolimus (1 mg) was started as the dosage of oral glucocorticoids was tapered. However, the patient developed an intermittent high fever and productive cough 15 months after starting adalimumab treatment. A chest computed tomography scan revealed new granular shadows and multiple nodules in both lung fields with mediastinal lymphadenopathy, and Mycobacterium intracellulare was isolated from 2 sputum samples; based on these findings, the patient was diagnosed with non-tuberculosis mycobacteriosis. Tacrolimus treatment was discontinued and oral clarithromycin (800 mg/day), rifampicin (450 mg/day), and ethambutol (750 mg/day) treatment was initiated. However, his condition continued to deteriorate despite 4 months of treatment; moreover, paravertebral and subcutaneous abscesses developed and increased the size of the mediastinal lymphadenopathy. Biopsy of the mediastinal lymphadenopathy and a subcutaneous abscess of the right posterior thigh indicated the presence of Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC), and the diagnosis of disseminated non-tuberculosis mycobacteriosis was confirmed. Despite 9 months of antimycobacterial therapy, the mediastinal lymphadenopathy and paravertebral and subcutaneous abscesses had enlarged and additional subcutaneous abscesses had developed, although microscopic examinations and cultures of sputum and subcutaneous abscess samples yielded negative results. We considered this a paradoxical reaction similar to other reports in tuberculosis patients who had discontinued biological agent treatments, and increased the dose of oral glucocorticoids. The patient’s symptoms gradually improved with this increased dose and his lymph nodes and abscesses began to decrease in size.
Clinicians should consider the possibility of a paradoxical response when the clinical manifestations of non-tuberculosis mycobacteriosis worsen in spite of antimycobacterial therapy or after discontinuation of tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitors. However, additional evidence is needed to verify our findings and to determine the optimal management strategies for such cases.
Non-tuberculosis mycobacteriosis; Mycobacterium intracellulare; Disseminated infection; Relapsing polychondritis; Paradoxical response; Tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitor; Immune reconstitution inflammation syndrome; Non-HIV
African trypanosomiasis is a parasitic infection sporadically imported to Europe by tourists or immigrants returning from endemic areas. We present the first and an unusual case of East African trypanosomiasis imported to Poland by a patient returning from a tourist trip to Uganda and Rwanda, which was successfully treated with pentamidine.
A 61-year-old Polish man was admitted to the Department because of high-grade fever and multi-organ dysfunction after a tourist trip to East Africa. He experienced a single tsetse fly bite during a safari trip to the Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda. On admission, his clinical status was severe, with high fever of 41ºC, preceded by chills, bleeding from the gums and oral mucosa, haemorrhages at the sites of venipuncture, numerous ecchymoses, fine-spotted skin rash, tachycardia, hepatosplenomegaly, dehydration, jaundice, dyspnoea, hypoxaemia, generalised oedema and oliguria. There was a typical non-painful trypanosomal chancre with central necrosis and peripheral erythema on his left arm. Laboratory investigations showed leucopenia, thrombocytopenia, haemolytic anaemia, hyperbilirubinaemia, hypoglycaemia, elevated creatinine and urea, high activity of aminotransferases, elevated levels of inflammatory markers, hypoproteinaemia, proteinuria, abnormal clotting and bleeding times, low fibrinogen level, metabolic acidosis, and electrolyte disturbances. A peripheral blood smear showed numerous Trypanosoma brucei trypomastigotes with a massive parasitaemia of 100,000/μl. T. brucei rhodesiense subspecies was finally identified on the basis of the characteristic serum resistance-associated gene using a polymerase chain reaction, and a seroconversion of specific immunoglobulin M and G antibodies in the peripheral blood by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Serological tests for T. brucei gambiense subspecies were negative. A severe clinical course of acute rhodesiense trypanosomiasis with renal failure, respiratory distress, disseminated intravascular coagulation syndrome, haemolysis, liver insufficiency and myocarditis was confirmed. Intensive anti-parasitic and symptomatic treatment was immediately instituted, including intravenous pentamidine, plasmaphereses, oxygen therapy, blood transfusion, catecholamine administration, and fluid infusions, as well as haemostatic, hepatoprotective, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and diuretic drugs. The final outcome was a full recovery with no late sequelae.
Sleeping sickness should always be considered in the differential diagnosis of fever in people returning from safari trips to the national parks or nature reserves of sub-Saharan Africa.
East African trypanosomiasis; Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense; Imported tropical disease; Travel medicine; Pentamidine
Endocarditis due to Propionibacterium acnes is a rare disease. Scant data on treatment of these infections is available and is based on case reports only. If the disease is complicated by abscess formation, surgical intervention combined with an antibiotic therapy might improve clinical outcome. In some cases, cardiac surgeons are reluctant to perform surgery, since they consider the intervention as high risk. Therefore, a conservative therapy is required, with little, if any evidence to choose the optimal antibiotic. We report the first case of a successfully treated patient with P. acnes prosthetic valve endocarditis without surgery.
We report the case of a 29-year-old patient with a prosthetic valve endocarditis and composite graft infection with abscess formation of the left ventricular outflow tract due to P. acnes. Since cardiac surgery was considered as high risk, the patient was treated intravenously with ceftriaxone 2 g qd and rifampin 600 mg bid for 7 weeks and was switched to an oral therapy with levofloxacin 500 mg bid and rifampin 600 mg bid for an additional 6 months. Two sets of blood cultures collected six weeks after completion of treatment remained negative. The patient is considered to be cured based on absence of clinical signs and symptoms, normal laboratory parameters, negative radiology scans and negative blood cultures, determined at site visits over two years after completion of treatment.
To our knowledge, this is the first successfully managed patient with P. acnes prosthetic valve endocarditis with abscess formation of the left ventricular outflow tract who was treated with antibiotics alone without a surgical intervention. A six month treatment with a rifampin and levofloxacin combination was chosen, based on the excellent activity against stationary-phase and adherent bacteria.
Endocarditis; Propionibacterium acnes; Biofilm; Rifampin
Prior to initiating immunosuppressive therapy in the treatment of autoimmune inflammatory conditions, it is a requirement to screen for certain viral serology, including hepatitis B (HBV). A positive result may indicate the need for antiviral therapy, or contraindicate immunosuppression all together. An accurate interpretation of serological markers is therefore imperative in order to treat patients appropriately. We present a case of passive anti-HBV antibody transfer following intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) infusion, in which misinterpretation of serology results almost led to inappropriate treatment with antiviral therapy and the withholding of immunosuppressive agents. This phenomenon has been previously reported, but awareness remains limited.
A 50 year old Caucasian gentleman with a history of allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplant for transformed follicular lymphoma was admitted to hospital with recurrent respiratory tract infections. Investigation found him to be hypogammaglobulinaemic, and he was thus given 1 g/kg of intravenous immunoglobulin. The patient also disclosed a 3-week history of painful, swollen joints, leading to a diagnosis of seronegative inflammatory polyarthritis. Prior to initiating long term immunosuppression, viral screening found hepatitis B serology suggestive of past infection, with positive results for both anti-HBc and anti-HBs antibody, but negative HBV DNA. In response, prednisolone was weaned and the local hepatology team recommended commencement of lamivudine. Having been unable to identify a source of infection, the case was reported to the local blood centre, who tested a remaining vial from the same batch of IVIg and found it to be anti-HBc and anti-HBs positive. Fortunately the blood products were identified and tested prior to the patient initiating HBV treatment, and the effect of a delay in starting disease-modifying therapy was inconsequential in light of an excellent response to first-line therapies.
Misinterpretation of serology results following IVIg infusion may lead to significant patient harm, including unnecessary antiviral administration, the withholding of treatments, and psychosocial damage. This is especially pertinent at a time when we have an ever increasing number of patients being treated with IVIg for a wide array of immune-mediated disease. Passive antibody transfer should be considered wherever unexpected serological changes are identified.
Hepatitis B virus; Intravenous immunoglobulin; Passive antibody transfer; Seronegative inflammatory polyarthritis; Lymphoma; Haematopoietic stem cell transplant; Immunosuppression
The first case of human infection with avian influenza A (H7N9) virus was identified in March, 2013 and the new H7N9 virus infected 134 patients and killed 45 people in China as of September 30, 2013. Family clusters with confirmed or suspected the new H7N9 virus infection were previously reported, but the family cluster of H7N9 virus infection in Shandong Province was first reported.
A 36-year-old man was admitted to Zaozhuang City Hospital with progressive respiratory distress and suspicion of impending acute respiratory distress syndrome on April 21. The chest radiography revealed bilateral ground-glass opacities and pulmonary lesions. The second case, the first case’s 4 year old son, was admitted to the same hospital on April 28 with fever and multiple patchy shadows in the bilateral lungs. Both of the two cases were confirmed to infect with H7N9 virus by the results of real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase-chain reaction (rRT-PCR), virus isolation and serum antibody titer. At the same time, one environment samples was detected positive for H7N9 virus in the living poultry market in Zaozhuang. The homologous analysis of the full genome sequence indicated that both viruses from the patients were almost genetically identical. The field epidemiology investigation showed that the two cases had no recognized exposure to poultry, but had the exposure to the environment. The second case had substantial unprotected close exposure to his ill father and developed symptoms seven days after his last contact with his father. After surgery, the index case and his son were discharged on May 16 and May 6, respectively. 11 close contacts of both patients were identified and tested negative both the throat swabs and the serum antibody.
The infection of the index case probably resulted from contact with environmentally contaminated material. For the son, the probable infection source was from the index case during unprotected exposure, but the possibility from the environment or other sources could not be completely ruled out.
Avian Influenza A (H7N9) virus; Epidemiology; Infectious source