Childhood bacteremia in Israel: Causes, age relation, predisposing factors and source

S. Ashkenazi, L. Leibovici, C. Churi, M. Drucker, H. Konisberger, Z. Samra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


To delineate the spectrum of childhood bacteraemia in a tertiary medical center in Israel and to define the historical, clinical and environmental variables that affect it, 339 bacteremic episodes were studied. Ten of the episodes (3%) were polymicrobial and 148 (44%) were hospital acquired. Staphylococcus epidermidis (17%), Staph. aureus (10%), gram-negative bacilli and Haemophilus influenzae (7%) were the most frequent etiologic pathogens. Some organisms (e.g., H. influenzae, Streptococcus pneumoniae) caused mainly community-acquired bacteremia, while Klebsiella sp., Enterococcus faecalis, and Acinetobacter sp. caused mainly nosocomial bacteremia. Underlying conditions were noted in 72% of the bacteremic children. A source of the bacteremia was identified in 60% of the episodes; the most common was i.v.-line infection. Age, underlying condition, source and location in the hospital markedly affected the profile of microorganisms causing childhood bacteremia. Each of these variables defined 3-5 organisms that were most prominent. In each episode of suspected bacteremia, these variables should be considered, thus defining the most likely causative pathogen(s), which should be covered by appropriate empiric antimicrobial treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)610-616
Number of pages7
JournalIsrael Journal of Medical Sciences
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • Antibiotics
  • Bacteremia
  • Childhood
  • Pediatrics
  • Sepsis


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