Nocardiosis: updates and clinical overview

Mayo Clin Proc. 2012 Apr;87(4):403-7. doi: 10.1016/j.mayocp.2011.11.016.


Nocardia, a gram-positive bacillus with the microscopic appearance of branching hyphae, can produce considerable disease in the appropriate host. The taxonomy of Nocardia continues to evolve; more than 50 species have been described. Early recognition and effective therapy are imperative to achieve successful outcomes. Although nocardiosis typically occurs in patients with cell-mediated immunosuppressive conditions, infection may occasionally develop in immunocompetent patients as well. This review addresses the microbiology of Nocardia, risk factors for infection, clinical presentations, and management strategies.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Infective Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Nocardia / drug effects*
  • Nocardia Infections / diagnosis*
  • Nocardia Infections / drug therapy*
  • Nocardia Infections / microbiology
  • Risk Factors


  • Anti-Infective Agents