Twenty-seven patients with cystic fibrosis from our Danish Cystic Fibrosis Center went to a winter camp for 1 week in November of 1990. This study is based on 22 of these patients. Prior to attending camp, 17 out of 22 patients harbored Pseudomonas aeruginosa in their sputum, but 5 patients did not. After returning from camp, all 22 patients harbored P. aeruginosa in the sputum, including the 5 patients whose sputum was free of P. aeruginosa before they went. Epidemiological typing used pulsed-field gel electrophoresis of the P. aeruginosa isolates was performed. The typing results showed that the 5 cystic fibrosis patients who were free of P. aeruginosa in their sputum prior to the winter camp had acquired P. aeruginosa isolates identical to the P. aeruginosa strains isolated from the other 17 cystic fibrosis patients. This constitutes a cross-colonization rate of 100%, the highest rate ever detected among patients with cystic fibrosis. We conclude that separate holiday camps based on the infection status of the patients with cystic fibrosis are necessary to avoid cross-infection of patients not infected with P. aeruginosa.
Copyright 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.