Bloodstream infections in febrile neutropenic patients at a tertiary care center in Lebanon: a view of the past decade

Zeina A. Kanafani, Ghenwa K. Dakdouki, Khalil I. El-Chammas, Shaker Eid, George F. Araj, Souha S. Kanj

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Previous studies from Lebanon have shown Gram-negative organisms to be the predominant agents in febrile neutropenic patients. The objective of this study was to evaluate the most current epidemiological trends among patients with neutropenic fever. Methods: This prospective observational cohort study, the largest to date in the country, was conducted at the American University of Beirut Medical Center between January 2001 and December 2003, with the objective of describing the characteristics of patients with neutropenic fever and to assess temporal trends. Results: We included 177 episodes of neutropenic fever. The most common underlying malignancy was lymphoma (42.4%). Gastrointestinal and abdominal infections were predominant (31.6%) and 23.7% of cases represented fever of unknown origin. Gram-negative organisms were responsible for 78.8% (26/33) of bloodstream infections compared to 33.3% (11/33) with Gram-positive organisms. The in-hospital mortality rate in this study (12.1%) was considerably lower than in previous years. Conclusions: Gram-negative organisms are persistently predominant in our center. In a developing country like Lebanon with limited resources, lower mortality rates commensurate with worldwide reports were successfully achieved in this high-risk patient population. Protocols and guidelines should be adapted to the characteristics of individual institutions to ensure delivery of appropriate care to febrile neutropenic patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)450-453
Number of pages4
JournalInternational Journal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Bacteremia
  • Gram-negative infection
  • Lebanon
  • Neutropenic fever

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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