Lack of evidence of increased risk of bacterial transmission during cystic fibrosis educational programmes

J Cyst Fibros. 2016 Jan;15(1):109-15. doi: 10.1016/j.jcf.2015.04.007. Epub 2015 May 21.


Background: Educational and rehabilitation programmes increase the quality-of-life of patients with cystic fibrosis, but patients are discouraged to participate because of the risk of cross-infections.

Methods: Isolates of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus and Haemophilus influenzae cultured one year before to one year after attendance were investigated by pulsed field gel electrophoresis, multilocus sequence typing and/or spa-typing.

Results: We typed 984 bacterial isolates cultured from 46 patients aged 5-18 years attending educational programmes at Aarhus University Hospital during 2009-2011. There were no cross-infections with P. aeruginosa. Six cases of S. aureus or H. influenzae strain replacement with a new strain-type shared with a fellow attendee were found. However, the probability of acquiring a shared strain of S. aureus or H. influenzae was not increased for patients attending educational programmes.

Conclusions: Transmission of P. aeruginosa, S. aureus and H. influenzae related to attendance to the investigated educational programmes could not be documented.

Keywords: Cross-infection; Epidemiology; Multilocus sequence typing; Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis; spa-typing.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Bacterial Typing Techniques
  • Child
  • Cross Infection* / diagnosis
  • Cross Infection* / etiology
  • Cross Infection* / prevention & control
  • Cross Infection* / transmission
  • Cystic Fibrosis* / epidemiology
  • Cystic Fibrosis* / microbiology
  • Denmark / epidemiology
  • Disease Transmission, Infectious* / prevention & control
  • Disease Transmission, Infectious* / statistics & numerical data
  • Electrophoresis, Gel, Pulsed-Field / methods
  • Haemophilus influenzae / isolation & purification*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Multilocus Sequence Typing / methods
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / isolation & purification*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / isolation & purification*