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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Bacteremia and Skin Infections in Four Patients Caused by Helicobacter-Like Organisms.

  • Author(s): Pérez-Santiago, Josué
  • Ramirez-Gaona, Miguel
  • Holm-Kennedy, Robert
  • Smith, Davey M
  • Fierer, Joshua
  • et al.

Background:Enterohepatic Helicobacter-like organisms (HLO) have been recognized as causes of human infection since 1984, primarily as a cause of bacteremia and cellulitis in immunocompromised individuals, but the spectrum of illness due to HLO has expanded based on numerous reports from Japan. Methods:We report 4 epidemiologically unrelated immunocompetent patients with HLO bacteremia diagnosed within a 2-year period. Three patients had cellulitis and 1 patient had unexplained fever. 16S ribosomal deoxyribonucleic acid (rDNA) sequence analysis of 2 isolates suggested that they were Helicobacter cinaedi, and whole-genome sequencing showed that they differed only slightly from reference strains. Conclusions:We believe that this syndrome is more common than reported, but it is easily overlooked because the skin lesions resemble streptococcal cellulitis and respond very rapidly to β-lactam antibiotics, and the organism is difficult to isolate from the blood. All HLO in our series were isolated from blood using the ESP system and were not detected in 2 other widely used commercial blood culture systems.

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