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Aortoiliac aneurysms infected by Campylobacter fetus.

PURPOSE: Few reports of aortoiliac aneurysms infected by Campylobacter fetus are available. We report five cases and review previous reports, with a view to describing the clinical pattern, treatment options, and outcome of this infection.

METHODS: During a 10-year period, 21 patients were diagnosed with C fetus infection in the Department of Clinical Microbiology, five of whom had an infected arterial aneurysm. We retrospectively reviewed their medical charts. Diagnosis was made on the basis of clinical presentation, computed tomography scan, perioperative findings, and identification of C fetus in at least one blood culture or culture from an aneurysm specimen. Late outcome of surviving patients was assessed by telephone interview.

RESULTS: We identified four aortic aneurysms and one hypogastric aneurysm. All patients were seen in an emergency setting. Five had fever and abdominal pain, and three had contained rupture. Campylobacter fetus was found in blood cultures of four patients and in the aneurysm specimen of one patient. Three patients were treated by open repair and two by endovascular repair. One patient treated endovascularly died from septic shock due to C fetus at 2 weeks. One patient treated by open surgery underwent reoperation for persistent infection. The remaining patients were cured, but one died at 5 months of an unrelated cause. All surviving patients received long-term antibiotic therapy.

CONCLUSION: Campylobacter fetus infection of aortoiliac aneurysms is a serious condition with a high rate of rupture. However, long-term success can be obtained with prompt surgical treatment and an appropriate antibiotic regimen. The benefits of stent grafts remain debatable.

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