• 1 Hospital Teluk Intan, Department of Medicine, Perak, Malaysia.
  • 2 Hospital Teluk Intan, Department of Medicine, Perak, Malaysia
  • 3 Hospital Teluk Intan, Department of Microbiology, Perak, Malaysia
Med J Malaysia, 2019 12;74(6):472-476.
PMID: 31929471


INTRODUCTION: Melioidosis is caused by Burkholderia pseudomallei, a gram-negative aerobic bacillus, found in the soil and surface water. Treating melioidosis has been a challenge in district hospitals due to high usage of broad spectrum antibiotics and prolonged hospitalisation. This study is to review the patients' demography, clinical presentations and microbiological data.

METHODS: A 5-year retrospective study was carried out on patients admitted with culture positive for melioidosis from year 2013 to 2017 in Hospital Teluk Intan, Perak.

RESULTS: There were a total of 46 confirmed cases of melioidosis. Majority of the patients were working in the agricultural and farming (28.6%), and factories (25.7%). Thirty-one patients had diabetes mellitus (71.1%). Presentations of patients with melioidosis included pneumonia (54.3%), skin and soft tissue infection (19.6%), deep abscesses (15.2%) and bone and joint infections (13%). An average of 5.8 days was needed to confirm the diagnosis of melioidosis via positive culture. However, only 39.4% of these patients were started on ceftazidime or carbapenem as the empirical therapy. The intensive care unit (ICU) admission rate for melioidosis was 46% and the mortality rate was 52%. Our microbial cultures showed good sensitivity towards cotrimoxazole (97.1%), ceftazidime (100%) and carbapenem (100%).

CONCLUSION: Melioidosis carries high mortality rate, especially with lung involvement and bacteremia. Physicians should have high clinical suspicion for melioidosis cases to give appropriate antimelioidosis therapy early.

* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.