Fungal and bacterial coinfections increase mortality of severely ill COVID-19 patients

Link to article at PubMed

J Hosp Infect. 2021 Apr 11:S0195-6701(21)00151-1. doi: 10.1016/j.jhin.2021.04.001. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: SARS-CoV-2 predisposes patients to secondary infections; however, a better understanding of the impact of coinfections on the outcome of hospitalized COVID-19 patients is still necessary.

AIM: To analyse death risk due to coinfections in COVID-19 patients.

METHODS: We evaluated the Odds of death of 212 severely ill COVID-19 patients, with detailed focus on the risks for each pathogen, site of infection, comorbidities and length of hospitalization.

FINDINGS: The mortality rate was 50.47%. Fungal and/or bacterial isolation occurred in 89 patients, of which 83.14% died. Coinfected patients stayed hospitalized longer and had an increased Odds of dying (OR = 13.45, R2=0.31). The risk of death was increased by bacterial (OR=11.28) and fungal (OR=5.97) coinfections, with increased levels of creatinine, leukocytes, urea and C-reactive protein. Coinfections increased the risk of death if patients suffer from cardiovascular disease (OR= 11.53), diabetes (OR=6.00) or obesity (OR=5.60) in comparison with patients with these comorbidities but without pathogen isolation. The increased risk of death was detected for negative-coagulase Staphylococcus (OR=25.39), Candida non-albicans (OR=11.12), S. aureus (OR=10.72), Acinetobacter spp. (OR=6.88), Pseudomonas spp. (OR=4.77) and C. albicans (OR=3.97). The high-risk sites of infection were blood, tracheal aspirate and urine. Patients with coinfection undergoing invasive mechanical ventilation were 3.8 times more likely to die than those without positive cultures.

CONCLUSIONS: Severe COVID-19 patients with secondary coinfections required longer hospitalization and had higher risk of death. The early diagnosis of coinfections is essential to identify high-risk patients and to determine the right interventions to reduce mortality.

PMID:33852950 | DOI:10.1016/j.jhin.2021.04.001

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