Setticemia e meningoencefalite da Listeria monocytogenes nel paziente con cirrosi epatica: un caso di encefalopatia non epatica?

Lari, Federico; Bortolotti, Roberta; Vacchetti, Mariaelena; Bragagni, Gianpaolo; Lenzi, Marco
September 2012
Italian Journal of Medicine;Sep2012, Vol. 6 Issue 3, p231
Academic Journal
Summary: Introduction: The appearance of neurological disorders in a patient with liver cirrhosis initially suggests hepatic encephalopathy, but other causes should be considered, including bacterial infections. Materials and methods: An 80-year-old woman suffering from HCV-related cirrhosis was admitted for fever, confusion, and stupor. No improvement was seen after treatment with cephalosporins, lactulose, and fluids. Results: Listeria monocytogenes was isolated from blood cultures and subsequently from a cerebrospinal fluid specimen as well. On the basis of the antibiogram, the antibiotic therapy was modified to include ampicillin, but shock and multiorgan failure developed and the patient died one week later. Discussion: Bacterial infections are more common and more aggressive in patients with liver cirrhosis, probably because of the immune dysfunction associated with this disorder. The presence of neurological disorders in a patient with liver cirrhosis may be a sign of hepatic encephalopathy, but it is important to recall that there are other potential causes as well, including bacterial infections. In this case, it is possible that the patient''s symptoms were the result of the CNS infection with L. monocytogenes, which was particularly aggressive as a result of her cirrhosis.


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