Management of infectious disease syndromes in thoracic organ transplants and mechanical circulatory device recipients: a Delphi panel

Transpl Infect Dis. 2024 Feb 13:e14251. doi: 10.1111/tid.14251. Online ahead of print.


Purpose: Antimicrobial misuse contributes to antimicrobial resistance in thoracic transplant (TTx) and mechanical circulatory support (MCS) recipients. This study uses a modified Delphi method to define the expected appropriate antimicrobial prescribing for the common clinical scenarios encountered in TTx and MCS recipients.

Methods: An online questionnaire on managing 10 common infectious disease syndromes was submitted to a multidisciplinary Delphi panel of 25 experts from various disciplines. Consensus was predefined as 80% agreement for each question. Questions where consensus was not achieved were discussed during live virtual live sessions adapted by an independent process expert.

Results: An online survey of 62 questions related to 10 infectious disease syndromes was submitted to the Delphi panel. In the first round of the online questionnaire, consensus on antimicrobial management was reached by 6.5% (4/62). In Round 2 online live discussion, the remaining 58 questions were discussed among the Delphi Panel members using a virtual meeting platform. Consensus was reached among 62% (36/58) of questions. Agreement was not reached regarding the antimicrobial management of the following six clinical syndromes: (1) Burkholderia cepacia pneumonia (duration of therapy); (2) Mycobacterium abscessus (intra-operative antimicrobials); (3) invasive aspergillosis (treatment of culture-negative but positive BAL galactomannan) (duration of therapy); (4) respiratory syncytial virus (duration of antiviral therapy); (5) left ventricular assist device deep infection (initial empirical antimicrobial coverage) and (6) CMV (duration of secondary prophylaxis).

Conclusion: This Delphi panel developed consensus-based recommendations for 10 infectious clinical syndromes seen in TTx and MCS recipients.

Keywords: Delphi; antimicrobial stewardship; transplant.