Clinical significance of fungi isolated from cerebrospinal fluid in children

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We reviewed the isolation of fungi from cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) cultures at Texas Children's Hospital during the past 6 years to evaluate the significance of a positive culture and to identify potential risk factors. Thirty-seven fungal isolates were recovered from 23 patients representing 2% of all 1498 positive CSF cultures for the study period. Candida species accounted for 94.5% of all fungal isolates. Nine of the 23 patients were newborns and 8 of these were very low birth weight premature neonates. C. albicans was recovered from the CSF of all newborns. Eleven patients were children 4 months to 14 years old. Three patients had positive cultures of CSF obtained on postmortem examination. Leading potential risk factors for positive CSF cultures from neonates included antimicrobial therapy, prematurity, very low birth weight, umbilical catheterization, total parenteral nutrition, intubation and respiratory distress syndrome. For children beyond the newborn period, potential risk factors were

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