Mycobacterium chimaera causes tuberculosis-like infection in a male patient with anorexia nervosa

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Here we present a 27-year-old male patient--with a known prolonged history of anorexia nervosa (AN)--suffering from tuberculosis like infection. At the time he was admitted to clinical treatment, he had developed fever up to 40 degrees C and survived on a body mass index of 11.8. In this case, Mycobacterium chimaera, generally recognized for low pathogenicity, was identified as the causative agent. Remission from lung infection was achieved after antibiotic treatment according to laboratory susceptibility testing while earlier antituberculosis therapies had failed. Because of a large cavity in the upper left lung, surgical excision was necessary to prevent recurrence of lung infection. Moreover, stabilization of the patient general health problem needs to be supported by a lasting psychotherapy.

AuthorAlhanna, Joseph; Purucker, Michael; Steppert, Claus; Grigull-Daborn, Andrea; Schiffel, Gabriele; Gruber, Heribert & Borgmann, Stefan
JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume45(3):450-452
Year2012

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