Early bloodstream infection after cardiopulmonary bypass: Frequency rate, risk factors, and implications

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To determine the incidence, predisposing factors, and outcome of early bloodstream infection after cardiopulmonary bypass.


A case control study.


A 54-bed cardiac surgical intensive care in a tertiary referral center.


Patients from a 30-month period with preoperative hospital stay of <48 hrs and subsequent bloodstream infection within 96 hrs of cardiopulmonary bypass were included in a case group. The control group consisted of patients who had cardiac surgery on the same day as the case group.

Measurements and Main Results

Patient demographics, history of comorbidity, preoperative laboratory testing, details of surgery, transfusion requirement, inotropic infusions, hemodynamics, and arterial blood gases on admission to intensive care were compared in the two groups. Measures of outcome were duration of mechanical ventilation and intensive care stay, serum creatinine on the first postoperative day, highest creatinine and bilirubin concentrations, and hospital mortality.


Early bloodstream infection after cardiac surgery is uncommon and involves predominantly Gram-negative bacteria. The risk factors associated with bloodstream infection were preoperative morbidity and more complex surgery. Bloodstream infection was associated with a significantly adverse impact on outcome after cardiac surgery. (Crit Care Med 1997; 25:2009-2014)

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