Background: Monitoring the rate of infections in individual centers that treat patients with hematological malignancies is of major importance. However, there are no uniform guidelines for infection surveillance. Objectives: To describe the epidemiology of bacterial and fungal infections in a single hematology ward and to compare methods for reporting surveillance and infection rates in other centers in Israel. Methods: We conducted a prospective surveillance of all patients admitted to our hematology ward, applying standard definitions for invasive fungal infections and adapting definitions for non-fungal infections. Incidence rates were calculated using patients, admissions, hospital days and neutropenia days. We performed a search for other reported surveillance studies in Israel. Results: We detected 79 infectious episodes among 159 patients admitted to the hematology ward during 1 year. Using neutropenia days as the denominator for calculation of incidence discriminated best between patients at high and low risk for infection. The incidence of invasive fungal infections was 7, 10 and 18 per 1000 neutropenia days, among all patients, those with acute leukemia and those with acute leukemia undergoing induction therapy, respectively. Only 10 reports from Israel were identified, 6 of which were prospective. Our data could not be compared to these reports because of the varying definitions and denominators used. Conclusions: Hematology centers should monitor infection rates and report them in a uniform methodology.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Israel Medical Association Journal|
|State||Published - 25 Jun 2009|