Waterborne Pseudomonas aeruginosa transmission in a hematology unit?

Garvey, Mark I, Bradley, Craig W and Holden, Elisabeth (2018) Waterborne Pseudomonas aeruginosa transmission in a hematology unit? American journal of infection control, 46 (4). pp. 383-386. ISSN 1527-3296.

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Official URL: https://www.ajicjournal.org/article/S0196-6553(17)...



Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an important nosocomial pathogen that commonly colonizes hospital water supplies, including in taps and sinks. We report the transmission of P. aeruginosa from water to patients in a clinical hematology setting.


P. aeruginosa from water samples were compared to clinical isolates from hematology ward patients, via molecular typing (pulsed field gel electrophoresis).


P. aeruginosa cultured from blood cultures from 3 patients was indistinguishable from water strains, by molecular typing. Based on infection control inspections, the transmission event was surmised to be due to cleaning of equipment, specifically an infusion therapy procedure tray used to transport intravenous drugs to patients, with water from an outlet colonized by P. aeruginosa.


We show the importance of holistic factors, such as disposal of patient waste water, cleaning of tap outlets, and cleaning of medical equipment, in the transmission of P. aeruginosa, and demonstrate that the role of waterborne transmission of this organism in a hematology setting cannot be overlooked. We suggest that appropriate management of water, including both holistic and engineering interventions, is needed to stop transmission of P. aeruginosa from water to patients.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: WH Haemic and lymphatic systems. Haematology
Divisions: Planned IP Care > Oncology and Clinical Haematology
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Depositing User: Miss Emily Johnson
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2019 15:11
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2019 15:11
URI: http://www.repository.uhblibrary.co.uk/id/eprint/1896

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