Malassezia furfur: a cause of occlusion of percutaneous central venous catheters in infants in the intensive care nursery

Pediatr Infect Dis J. 1988 Feb;7(2):100-3.


Growth of Malassezia furfur in the intravascular catheter used for administration of lipid emulsion resulted in occlusion of deep intravascular Silastic catheters in 12 infants in 2 intensive care nurseries. At the time of occlusion visible growth was noted in the clear catheter which was connected to the Silastic intravascular line. Five infants showed clinical signs suggestive of sepsis. The yield of M. furfur from blood cultures and catheter tips was low even when oil enrichment was used. The highest yield of M. furfur was found in the connecting catheter (11 of 11). The source from and the route by which M. furfur entered the catheter remain unclear. The potential portals of entry include the proximal and distal ends of the connecting catheter as well as the colonized skin of the infants and caretakers.

MeSH terms

  • Catheterization, Central Venous / adverse effects*
  • Catheterization, Central Venous / instrumentation
  • Chemical Precipitation
  • Fat Emulsions, Intravenous / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infections / etiology
  • Infections / microbiology
  • Intensive Care Units, Neonatal*
  • Malassezia / growth & development*
  • Malassezia / isolation & purification
  • Mycoses / etiology
  • Mycoses / microbiology
  • Parenteral Nutrition, Total / adverse effects


  • Fat Emulsions, Intravenous