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18 January 2013
CHP confirms case of NDM-1 Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae   

     The Public Health Laboratory Services Branch (PHLSB) of the Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health confirmed a case of New Delhi metallo-β-lactamase-1 (NDM-1) Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae in a 26-year-old woman. 

     The woman was hospitalized for injury in a traffic accident during her stay in Cambodia from October to December 2012. She was admitted to Tuen Mun Hospital on January 10, 2013 for further management. Her current condition is stable. 
 
     The patient's rectal swab grew NDM-1 Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae, as confirmed by the PHLSB. 
 
     Investigations by the CHP are underway. 
 
     This is the 19th detected case of NDM Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae in Hong Kong. 
 
     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. 
 
     Infections have varied from being asymptomatic to potentially life-threatening or fatal. The level of risk depends on which part of the body is affected by the infection, and the general health of the patient. 
 
     NDM-producing Enterobacteriaceae was first reported in a Swedish patient of Indian origin who travelled to New Delhi, India, in 2008. The first fatal case was identified in 2010 in a patient who received medical treatment in Pakistan before being repatriated to Belgium. 
 
     NDM-producing Enterobacteriaceae has now been reported in many countries and regions including Australia, Austria, Canada, Belgium, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Sweden, Singapore, Taiwan, the UK and the US. Most patients had prior hospital contact in the Indian subcontinent. 
 
     A CHP spokesman said that proper use of antibiotics and personal hygiene, especially hand hygiene, are important for the prevention of emergence and cross-transmission of NDM strains. 
 
Ends/Friday, January 18, 2013 
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