Infections of Cardiac Implantable Electronic Devices: A Retrospective Multicenter Observational Study

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Infections of cardiac implantable electronic devices (CIED) can cause significant morbidity, mortality, and financial burden. Although staphylococcal organisms account for most infections of these cardiac devices, approximately 20% of all CIED-related infections are caused by non-Staphylococcus species. Herein we describe and compare the demographics, clinical presentation, and outcomes of Staphylococcus aureus and non-staphylococcal infections of CIED.We performed a retrospective, multicenter, observational study of patients from 4 academic hospitals in Houston between 2002 and 2009. All 80 identified non-staphylococcal CIED-related infections were matched, at a 1:1 ratio, to S. aureus infections.Although the demographics and general comorbidities in the 2 study groups were relatively similar, the S. aureus group had a higher proportion of patients with coronary artery disease, diabetes mellitus, and end-stage renal disease. Additionally, 81% of S. aureus compared with only 48.5% of the non-staphylococcal CIED-related infections were health care-associated (p < 0.001). Furthermore, when compared to non-staphylococcal infections, the S. aureus group had more indwelling intravascular foreign material (p < 0.001), more rapid clinical progression (p < 0.001), and overall worse clinical presentation (p < 0.001). However, after stratifying by clinical presentation, the mortality rates in the 2 groups were similar (p = 0.45).Since approximately one-fifth of all CIED-related infections are caused by non-staphylococcal organisms, and untimely antibiotic treatment can result in serious complications, it may be prudent to broaden empiric antimicrobial therapy to cover both Gram-positive and -negative bacteria, until the causative organism is identified.AbbreviationsCIED = cardiac implantable electronic devices, ESR = erythrocyte sedimentation rate, ICD = implantable cardioverter-defibrillators, MRSA = methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, MSSA = methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus, PPM = permanent pacemakers, TEE = transesophageal echocardiogram, TTE = transthoracic echocardiogram, WBC = white blood cell count

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