Lactobacillus species as emerging pathogens in neutropenic patients

Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 1997 Sep;16(9):681-4. doi: 10.1007/BF01708560.


The intensive use of broad-spectrum antibiotics in the context of prolonged and severe neutropenia has contributed to the emergence of unusual pathogens. Four new cases of severe Lactobacillus infections-three of septicemia and one of pneumonia-are reported. They occurred in patients with acute leukemia who had chemotherapy-induced neutropenia. All patients were treated in the same intensive care unit and received the same antimicrobial prophylaxis which included a total bowel decontamination containing vancomycin. The four patients were treated with a combination of intravenous ceftazidime and vancomycin prior to the development of Lactobacillus infection. Improvement in the condition of all patients was obtained with a treatment including penicillin and concurrent recovery of granulopoiesis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ceftazidime / administration & dosage
  • Drug Therapy, Combination / therapeutic use
  • Gram-Positive Bacterial Infections / drug therapy
  • Gram-Positive Bacterial Infections / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Lactobacillus / drug effects
  • Lactobacillus / pathogenicity*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neutropenia / drug therapy
  • Neutropenia / microbiology*
  • Opportunistic Infections / drug therapy
  • Opportunistic Infections / microbiology*
  • Penicillins / administration & dosage
  • Vancomycin / administration & dosage


  • Penicillins
  • Vancomycin
  • Ceftazidime