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CHP investigating case of NDM-5 Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae

     The Public Health Laboratory Services Branch (PHLSB) of the Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health confirmed today (June 23) a case of New Delhi metallo-]-lactamase-5 (NDM-5) Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae.

     The patient is a woman aged 59 with underlying illness. She was admitted to a hospital in India in May and came back to Hong Kong on June 13. She has presented with abdominal pain and vomiting since June 16 and was admitted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital on the same day. She was discharged on June 19 and has been in stable condition all along.

     Her rectal swab grew NDM-5 Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae upon laboratory testing by the PHLSB.

     The patient's home contacts remain asymptomatic. Investigations by the CHP are ongoing.

     "NDM is an enzyme which can inactivate carbapenems and other beta-lactams such as penicillins. Bacteria harbouring this NDM gene are commonly resistant to multiple antimicrobials, limiting therapeutic options and rendering severe clinical infections difficult to treat. Most bacteria with the NDM enzyme remain susceptible to two types of antibiotics, colistin and tigecycline," a spokesman for the CHP said.

     Infections have varied from being asymptomatic to potentially life-threatening or fatal. The level of risk depends on which part of the body is infected and the general health of the patient.

     The spokesman said that proper use of antibiotics and personal hygiene, especially hand hygiene, are important for preventing the emergence and cross-transmission of NDM strains.

Ends/Monday, June 23, 2014
Issued at HKT 19:06


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