Infections and pseudoinfections due to povidone-iodine solution contaminated with Pseudomonas cepacia

Adelisa L. Panlilio, Consuelo M. Beck-Sague, Jane D. Siegel, Roger L. Anderson, Sylvia Y. Yetts, Nancye C. Clark, Patricia N. Duer, Kathryn A. Thomassen, Robert W. Vess, Bertha C. Hill, Ofelia C. Tablan, William R. Jarvis

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87 Scopus citations


In 1989 we investigated the first instance of Pseudomonas cepacia infections due to intrinsic contamination of a povidone-iodine product. Six patients in a Texas pediatric facility had P. cepacia infection or pseudoinfection (three, peritonitis; one, pseudoperitonitis; and two, pseudobacteremia). Epidemiological studies showed one risk factor for infection of peritoneal fluid with P. cepacia: performance of peritoneal dialysis in the dialysis unit with use of one lot of povidone-iodine later found to be intrinsically contaminated (4/5 vs. 0/16, P = .001). Blood cultures yielded P. cepacia after nurses wiped the tops of blood culture bottles with the povidone-iodine solution before inoculation. P. cepacia was cultured from three povidone-iodine containers used at the hospital and from four containers of the same lot obtained from other health-care facilities in Texas and California. Isolates from patients and the povidone-iodine had similar antibiograms, identical plasmid profiles, and identical DNA banding patterns on the basis of results of ribonucleotide typing. This investigation demonstrates that intrinsic contamination of povidone-iodine solution with P. cepacia can result in infections in addition to colonization and/or pseudoinfection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1078-1083
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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