What is the role of third-generation cephalosporins in the increased prevalence of enterococcal infections?

Updated: Jun 10, 2021
  • Author: Susan L Fraser, MD; Chief Editor: John L Brusch, MD, FACP  more...
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Answer

The increased prevalence of serious enterococcal infections has been associated with the rise of third-generation cephalosporins. These compounds have no activity against enterococci but do eradicate the aerobic and anaerobic competitive organisms that act as suppressors of overgrowth of these pathogens in various body sites. The development of VRE also appears to be tied into the use of third-generation cephalosporins. [17] Over the past 20 years, the incidence of multiply resistant E faecium has significantly increased; 35%-40% of enterococcal bloodstream infections involve this microorganism. [18]


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