Fatal outcomes in family transmission of mycoplasma pneumoniae

T. R. Kannan, R. D. Hardy, J. J. Coalson, D. C. Cavuoti, J. D. Siegel, M. Cagle, O. Musatovova, C. Herrera, J. B. Baseman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background. Mycoplasma pneumoniae continues to be a significant cause of community-acquired pneumonia and, on rare occasions, manifests as fulminant disease that leads to mortality, even in healthy individuals.Methods.We conducted a retrospective study on members of a family who were quarantined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2002 for respiratory failure and death of a 15-year-old brother (sibling 1) and a 13-year-old sister (sibling 2). Collected airway, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and serum samples from both deceased siblings and serum samples from both parents and the remaining 3 ill siblings (sibling 3-5) were tested using a range of diagnostic assays. Autopsy lung tissue samples from sibling 2 were also assessed using immunohistochemical and immunoelectron microscopic methods. Results. Autopsy evaluation of sibling 1 revealed cerebral edema consistent with hypoxic ischemic encepatholopathy and pulmonary findings of bronchiolitis obliterans with organizing pneumonia (BOOP). Postmortem lung examination of sibling 2 revealed lymphoplasmacytic bronchiolitis with intraluminal purulent exudate, BOOP, and pulmonary edema. Results of diagnostic assays implicated the household transmission of M. pneumoniae among all 5 siblings and both parents. Further analysis of lung tissue from sibling 2 demonstrated the presence of M. pneumoniae organisms and community-acquired respiratory distress syndrome toxin. M. pneumoniae was cultured directly from sibling 2 autopsy lung tissue.Conclusion.Evidence is provided that M. pneumoniae was readily transmitted to all members of the household and that the resulting infections led to a spectrum of individual responses with variation in disease progression, including lymphoplasmacytic bronchiolitis, BOOP, and death.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-231
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Volume54
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 15 2012

    Fingerprint

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

Cite this

Kannan, T. R., Hardy, R. D., Coalson, J. J., Cavuoti, D. C., Siegel, J. D., Cagle, M., Musatovova, O., Herrera, C., & Baseman, J. B. (2012). Fatal outcomes in family transmission of mycoplasma pneumoniae. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 54(2), 225-231. https://doi.org/10.1093/cid/cir769