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Autore Maria Pihl,1 Julia R. Davies,1 Ann-Cathrine Johansson,2 and Gunnel Svensaeter1
Referenza Peritoneal Dialysis International 2012; doi: 10.3747/pdi.2011.00320

Background: Peritonitis is the leading cause of morbidity for peritoneal dialysis (PD) patients, and microbial biofilms have previously been identified on catheters from infected patients. However, few studies of catheters from patients without clinical signs of infection have been undertaken. The aim of the present study was to investigate the extent to which bacteria are present on catheters from PD patients with no symptoms of infection.

Methods: Microbiologic culturing under aerobic and anaerobic conditions and confocal laser scanning microscopy were used to determine the distribution of bacteria on PD catheters from 15 patients without clinical signs of infection and on catheters from 2 infected patients. The 16S rRNA gene sequencing technique was used to identify cultured bacteria.

Results: Bacteria were detected on 12 of the 15 catheters from patients without signs of infection and on the 2 catheters from infected patients. Single-species and mixed-microbial communities containing up to 5 species were present on both the inside and the outside along the whole length of the colonized catheters. The bacterial species most commonly found were the skin commensals Staphylococcus epidermidisand Propionibacteriumacnes, followed
by S. warneriand S.lugdunensis. The strains of these micro-organisms, particularly those of S.epidermidis, varied in phenotype with respect to their tolerance of the major classes of antibiotics.

Conclusions: Bacteria were common on catheters from patients without symptoms of infection. Up to 4 different bacterial species were found in close association and may represent a risk factor for the future development
of peritonitis in patients hosting such micro-organisms.

Data 02.04.2013
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