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Nontuberculous Mycobacterium Infections Associated With Heater-Cooler Devices
Allen and colleagues reviewed the Food and Drug Administration Medical Device Reporting database for reports of nontuberculous mycobacterium (NTM) infections following extracorporeal circulation usage during surgery. This review of a US database found that reported infections were attributable to several device manufacturers, perhaps indicating that design features of these devices make them susceptible to NTM contamination. Infections associated with aerosolized NTM during surgery represent an epidemiologic departure from the usual transmission route of inhalation, and such infections are aggressive despite being slow to develop. The authors conclude that NTM infection secondary to cardiothoracic surgery, despite being uncommon, is an emerging public health concern that merits attention and awareness.