Volume 225 (2011) Issue 2 Pages 81-84
The genus Aeromonas comprises flagellated gram-negative rods widely distributed in freshwater, estuarine and marine environments. Aeromonas species may cause a variety of illnesses in humans, such as enterocolitis and septicemia, especially in warmer tropical or subtropical environments. To recognize the characteristics of Aeromonas septicemia in Japan, we reviewed laboratory data and medical records in our hospital. During 11 years (from 2000 to 2010), Aeromonas septicemia was observed in seven patients involving six female subjects. Six patients were observed in summer or fall. The incidence of Aeromonas septicemia was about 0.07 per 1000 admissions, and two out of the seven patients died. All patients had underlying diseases such as malignancy (six patients) and choledocholithiasis (one patient). Two patients developed septicemia within two days after ingesting raw seafood. Five patients developed Aeromonas septicemia > 48 h after admission. Fever was present in all patients, and four out of the seven patients developed septic shock. All patients developed monomicrobial septicemia. A. hydrophila was isolated from five patients, and A. caviae and A. veronii biovar sobria were isolated from one patient each. Most antimicrobial agents had high activity against the isolated strains. However, a carbapenem-resistant strain appeared in one patient during treatment and led to death. Aeromonas septicemia is uncommon in temperate areas but can occur particularly in warm seasons. Immunocompromised conditions and recent ingestion of raw fish or shellfish are important characteristics of developing Aeromonas septicemia.