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Zainal Muttakin AR, Tan AM
Correspondence: Dr Zainal Muttakin Abdul Rahman, firstname.lastname@example.org
We report Mycobacterium fortuitum (M. fortuitum) catheter-related sepsis in a five-year-old boy with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). This is the first reported case of M. fortuitum infection seen in our paediatric oncology patients. The patient was in haematological remission and receiving maintenance chemotherapy via an indwelling central venous catheter (Port-a-Cath). He was febrile, toxic-looking and was in respiratory distress. Clinically, he had a right pleural effusion and gross hepatomegaly. The patient was lymphopaenic and had deranged liver function test. Repeat paired blood cultures were positive for M. fortuitum. The catheter was promptly removed and he was treated aggressively with intravenous amikacin, cefoxitin, ciprofloxacin, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole and oral clarithromycin, with good clinical response. The patient remained well without further complications while on chemotherapy. M. fortuitum is an uncommon cause of catheter-related infection in patients with malignancies. Removal of an infected catheter is necessary for complete control of atypical mycobacterial infection in an immunosuppressed patient.
Keywords: acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, immunocompromised host, indwelling catheters, Mycobacterium fortuitum, sepsis
Singapore Med J 2006; 47(6): 543-545