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"Enterococcus species are the third most common organisms causing central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs)" Awadh et al (2021).
Management of enterococcal CLABSI


Objective: Enterococcus species are the third most common organisms causing central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs). The management of enterococcal CLABSI, including the need for and timing of catheter removal, is not well defined. We therefore conducted this study to determine the optimal management of enterococcal CLABSI in cancer patients.

Methods: We reviewed data for 542 patients diagnosed with Enterococcus bacteremia between September 2011 to December 2018. After excluding patients without an indwelling central venous catheter (CVC), polymicrobial bacteremia or with CVC placement less than 48 h from bacteremia onset we classified the remaining 397 patients into 3 groups: Group 1 (G1) consisted of patients with CLABSI with mucosal barrier injury (MBI), Group 2 (G2) included patients with either catheter-related bloodstream infection (CRBSI) as defined in 2009 Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Intravascular Catheter-Related Infection by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) or CLABSI without MBI, and Group 3 (G3) consisted of patients who did not meet the CDC criteria for CLABSI. The impact of early (< 3 days after bacteremia onset) and late (3-7 days) CVC removal was compared. The composite primary outcome included absence of microbiologic recurrence, 90-day infection-related mortality, and 90-day infection-related complications.

Results: Among patients in G2, CVC removal within 3 days of bacteremia onset was associated with a trend towards a better overall outcome than those whose CVCs were removed later between days 3 to 7 (success rate 88% vs 63%). However, those who had CVCs retained beyond 7 days had a similar successful outcome than those who had CVC removal < 3 days (92% vs. 88%). In G1, catheter retention (removal > 7 days) was associated with a better success rates than catheter removal between 3 and 7 days (93% vs. 67%, p = 0.003). In non-CLABSI cases (G3), CVC retention (withdrawal > 7 days) was significantly associated with a higher success rates compared to early CVC removal (< 3 days) (90% vs. 64%, p = 0.006).

Conclusion: Catheter management in patients with enterococcal bacteremia is challenging. When CVC removal is clinically indicated in patients with enterococcal CLABSI, earlier removal in less than 3 days may be associated with better outcomes. Based on our data, we cannot make firm conclusions about whether earlier removal (< 3 days) could be associated with better outcomes in patients with Enterococcal CLABSI whose CVC withdrawal is clinically indicated. In contrast, it seemed that catheter retention was associated to higher success outcome rates. Therefore, future studies are needed to clearly assess this aspect.


Awadh H, Chaftari AM, Khalil M, Fares J, Jiang Y, Deeba R, Ali S, Hachem R, Raad II. Management of enterococcal central line-associated bloodstream infections in patients with cancer. BMC Infect Dis. 2021 Jul 5;21(1):643. doi: 10.1186/s12879-021-06328-9. PMID: 34225651; PMCID: PMC8256598.