July 29, 2015
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Epidemiology of cystic fibrosis continues to change

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There have been significant increases and decreases in overall annual prevalence and incidence of cystic fibrosis pathogens in patients between 2006 and 2012, according to study results.

The causes of the increases and decreases likely include improvements in clinical care and infection prevention and control, according to the researchers.

“Such data will be useful to evaluate the impact of newer therapies including [cystic fibrosis (CF)] transmembrane conductance regulator correctors and potentiators, the effectiveness of the new infection prevention and control guidelines, and eradication strategies,” Elizabeth L. Salsgiver, MPH, a research coordinator at Weill Cornell Medical College, and colleagues wrote.

Salsgiver and colleagues conducted a retrospective analysis using data from the CF Foundation Patient Registry from 2006 to 2012 to assess the annual percent changes in the prevalence and incidence of selected CF pathogens.

The analysis included 31,915 patients, 42.9% of which had at least one positive culture for CF pathogen reported to the patient registry each year of the study.

The pathogens with the highest prevalence in 2012 included methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) (52.3%), P. aeruginosa (49.6%) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) (26.5%).

The largest changes in incidence and prevalence by age groups between 2006 and 2012 occurred in P. aeruginosa and MRSA (P < .001 for all).

MSSA prevalence remained stable in patients aged 2 to 5 years (P = .689) and patients aged 6 to 10 years (P = .78), but increased significantly in adults aged 18 to 25 years (P < .05) and adults aged 26 years and older (P < .001).

The study did have limitations, according to the researchers.

“This observational study cannot determine causality and may be subject to reporting bias, laboratory misidentification of CF pathogens, and data entry errors,” the researchers wrote. – by Ryan McDonald

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.