The changing aetiology of paediatric bacteraemia in England and Wales, 1998-2007

Katherine L. Henderson, Alan Johnson, Berit Muller-Pebody, Andre Charlett, Ruth Gilbert, Mike Sharland

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29 Citations (Scopus)


Bacteraemia in children is a potentially life-threatening condition. The objective of this study was to determine trends in the aetiology of bacteraemia in children aged 1 month-15 years in England and Wales by collecting data voluntarily reported by National Health Service hospital microbiology laboratories. Over the 10-year period 1998-2007, a total of 51 788 bacteraemia cases involving 105 genera/species of bacteria were reported. Total annual reports of bacteraemia increased from 4125 to 6916, with a mean increase of 6.5% per year (95% CI: 1.3-12.1 %). In 2007, just over half the cases were accounted for by four groups of organisms: coagulase-negative staphylococci (28 %), Staphylococcus aureus (10 %), non-pyogenic streptococci (9 %) and Streptococcus pneumoniae (7 %). These organisms along with a further 13 species/genera accounted for 90% of the cases. The commonest Gram-negative organisms were Neisseria meningitidis and Escherichia coli, which each accounted for 5% of total bacteraemia reports in 2007. There was a significant decrease in reports of bacteraemia due to the three vaccinepreventable pathogens Haemophilus influenzae, N. meningitidis and Strep. pneumoniae, following the introduction of each vaccine programme or catch-up campaign. This study identified the commonest causes of bacteraemia in children in England and Wales, and highlighted the shifts in trends observed over time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-219
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Medical Microbiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


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