Thursday, May 24, 2018

CDC Update: Candida Auris - April 2018


Not quite two years ago (June 2016) the CDC issued a Clinical Alert to U.S. Health care facilities about the Global Emergence of Invasive Infections Caused by the Multidrug-Resistant Yeast Candida auris.

C. auris is an emerging fungal pathogen that was first isolated in Japan in 2009. It was initially found in the discharge from a patient's external ear (hence the name `auris').  Retrospective analysis has traced this fungal infection back over 20 years.
Since then the CDC and public health entities have been monitoring an increasing number of cases (and hospital clusters) in the United States and abroad, generally involving bloodstream infections, wound infections or otitis.
Adding to the concern:
  1. C. auris infections have a high fatality rate
  2. The strain appears to be resistant to multiple classes of anti-fungals  
  3. This strain is unusually persistent on fomites in healthcare environments.
  4. And it can be difficult for labs to differentiate it from other Candida strains
The CDC has updated their C. Auris surveillance page, where they show - as of April 30th  - 279 confirmed cases and 29 probable cases, across 11 states.  An increase of more than 10% over the previous month.

Additionally, based on targeted screening in four states reporting clinical cases, the CDC reports an additional 517 patients have been discovered to be asymptomatically colonized with C. auris.

As previously mentioned, this isn't just a United States' problem, but a global health threat.  This fungal infection, which was first detected in Japan in 2009, has now turned up on multiple continents.
For more on this emerging fungal pathogen, you may wish peruse the CDC's dedicated web page:
General Information about Candida auris
Tracking Candida auris
Patients and Family Members
Healthcare Professionals
Fact Sheet
And for some older blogs on the topic, you may wish to revisit:
MMWR: Ongoing Transmission of Candida auris in Health Care Facilities
MMWR: Investigation of the First Seven Reported Cases of Candida auris In the United States
mSphere: Comparative Pathogenicity of UK Isolates of the Emerging Candida auris

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