Incidence and severity of group A streptococcal bacteremia in a medical center in Israel, 1981-1994

Gilat Livni, Shai Ashkenazi, Leonard Leibovici, Silvio Pitlik, Bruria Lev, Hana Konisberger, Zmira Samra, Moshe Drucker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


To determine recent trends in the incidence and severity, group A streptococcal (GAS) bacteremia was studied over the last 14 years (1981-1994). There were 116 events of GAS bacteremia, representing 1.7% of all bacteremic episodes, without an increase in recent years. A total of 108 patients were available for study. Underlying conditions were found in 95 patients (88%), including mainly malignant diseases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure and diabetes mellitus. A source of the bacteremia was noted in 71 patients (66%), with skin and soft tissue infection being the major portal of entry. All isolates were susceptible to penicillin. Overall mortality was 21%. Mortality had not increased in recent years, but depended significantly on several clinical factors: increased age; admission temperature; source of bacteremia (highest for GAS bacteremia without an identified source); and underlying conditions (highest for diabetes mellitus and chronic pulmonary disease, absent for patients with no underlying disease). This study shows that neither the incidence nor the severity of GAS bacteremia has increased in recent years. Severity is significantly affected by the source of bacteremia and the presence of underlying conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-142
Number of pages4
JournalScandinavian Journal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


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