Last Updated: 2013-06-07
Infections caused by Vibrio species other than V cholerae.
Associated with the consumption of raw or undercooked shellfish, or traumatic exposure to sea or brackish water, and characterized by diarrhea and vomiting, sepsis, and/or skin/soft-tissue infection.
V vulnificus is the most virulent and can rapidly produce fatal septic shock in immunocompromised patients or those with underlying liver disease.
The diagnosis is based on blood, wound, and/or stool cultures.
Treatment consists of intravenous ceftazidime plus doxycycline for those with sepsis or severe systemic infection. Patients with necrotizing skin/soft-tissue infection additionally require early aggressive debridement of the infected tissue. Localized skin/soft-tissue wound infections are managed with oral antibiotics and close observation.
Gastroenteritis syndromes are treated with rehydration. Oral antibiotics are indicated if diarrhea persists >5 days.
Prognosis varies with the host's underlying comorbidity and the clinical presentation of the infection.
Gangrenous change with hemorrhagic bullae in a patient with cirrhosis who developed septic shock and Vibrio vulnificus bacteremia
From the image collection of the CDC
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