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Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the Intensive Care Unit

Marin H. Kollef, MD, discusses Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections within the intensive care unit.

Marin H. Kollef, MD, professor of medicine and Virginia E. & Sam J. Golman chair of the Respiratory Intensive Care department of Washington University School of Medicine, discusses Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections within the intensive care unit.

Interview transcript (modified slightly for readability):

“When you talk about Pseudomonas aeruginosa within the intensive care unit (ICU) setting as opposed to other health settings, it’s important to recognize that number one, the patients are sicker, and number two, the organism will be more drug-resistant in the ICU in general than it is outside of the ICU setting. Those 2 factors really impact how the infection presents itself.

Typically, the mortality is higher in the ICU setting when you have a Pseudomonas infection; the lengths of stay will be longer in patients who develop infections in the ICU compared with those who develop them outside of the ICU setting.

And the organisms are just more difficult to treat. They’re more difficult to treat in large part because they’re more antibiotic-resistant. Not only that, but there’s even less room for error, meaning that if you don’t treat correctly upfront, then the penalty is greater for the patient.”