Sepsis resulting from Enterobacter aerogenes resistant to carbapenems after liver transplantation

Hepatobiliary Pancreat Dis Int. 2009 Jun;8(3):320-2.


Background: Sepsis due to Enterobacter aerogenes (E. aerogenes) is rare after liver transplantation but is also a serious infection that may cause liver abscess. The purpose of this case report is to relate an unusual presentation of liver transplantation to show how successive treatment can be an appropriate option in septic patients after liver transplantation.

Method: We report on a patient with liver transplantation who developed sepsis due to extended spectrum beta-lactamases and AmpC-producing E. aerogenes.

Results: A 39-year-old man had a biliary fistula and then was found to have multiple liver abscesses through abdominal ultrasound and an abdominal computed tomography scan, and carbapenem-sensitive E. aerogenes infection was confirmed. The patient was not successfully treated with conservative treatment consisting of intravenous carbapenems, percutaneous transhepatic cholangial drainage, and biliary stent placement by endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, so a second liver transplantation followed. Carbapenem-resistant E. aerogenes was detected in bile and blood after a five-week course of carbapenem therapy. The patient developed septic shock and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome.

Conclusions: We first report an unusual case of sepsis caused by E. aerogenes after liver transplantation in China. Carbapenem-resistant E. aerogenes finally leads to uncontrolled sepsis with current antibiotics. We hypothesize that the infection developed as a result of biliary fistula and predisposing immunosuppressive agent therapy. Further research is progressing on the aspect of immunomodulation therapy.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Carbapenems / therapeutic use*
  • Drug Resistance, Bacterial*
  • Enterobacter aerogenes / physiology*
  • Enterobacteriaceae Infections / complications
  • Enterobacteriaceae Infections / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Liver Abscess / microbiology
  • Liver Transplantation / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Multiple Organ Failure / microbiology
  • Postoperative Care*
  • Shock, Septic / microbiology


  • Carbapenems