Infection Control in the ICU: Pattern of Colonization and Infection in Surgical Intensive Care Patients — a Prospective Study
This prospective study of 39 ICU patients aimed to determine the frequency of colonization of the oropharynx and of the respiratory, digestive and urinary tracts with nosocomial microorganisms and the relationship between such colonization and infection. All patients required intensive care for at least 5 days, and all were endotracheally intubated and mechanically ventilated. Indwelling urinary catheters, nasogastric tubes, and arterial and central venous catheters were used routinely in all patients. In this study, infection was defined as the clinical diagnosis with or without positive bacteriology. Cultures were obtained thrice weekly from the oropharynx, lower respiratory tract, rectum and urine. Samples from suspect areas (wounds, drains, inflamed tissues) were cultured when indicated.