Melioidosis: An Australian perspective

Simon Smith, Joshua Hanson, Bart Currie

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    Burkholderia pseudomallei is endemic in northern Australia, with cases of melioidosis most commonly occurring during the wet season in individuals with diabetes, hazardous alcohol use, and chronic kidney disease. Pneumonia is the most common presentation and the majority of patients are bacteraemic—however, infection may involve almost any organ, with the skin and soft tissues, genitourinary system, visceral organs, and bone and joints affected most commonly. Central nervous system involvement is rarer, but has a high attributable mortality. Increased awareness of the disease amongst healthcare providers, ready access to appropriate antibiotic therapy and high-quality intensive care services has resulted in a sharp decline in the case fatality rate over the last 20 years. Further improvement in clinical outcomes will require a greater understanding of the disease′s pathophysiology, its optimal management, and more effective strategies for its prevention.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number27
    Pages (from-to)1-11
    Number of pages11
    JournalTropical Medicine and Infectious Disease
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018


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