I’ve been meaning to blog on this editorial about ethnicity as a risk factor (or not!) for infection by Prof Leibovici in Clinical Microbiology and Infection for a while. The basic story is that “ethnicity” often falls out as associated with infection-related variables (e.g. colonisation or infection with resistant bacteria), but the editorial poses an important question: it is actually ethnicity, or something co-correlated with ethnicity (e.g. socio-economic status) that is the causal risk factor?
A study just published in ICHE investigates tweeting activity at several IPC / ID / AMR conferences (the 2016 editions of IPS, ID Week, FIS/HIS, and ACIPC). Perhaps the most interesting finding is that including a weblink or tweeting on certain topics (including C. difficile and the media) increase the chances of a tweet being retweeted, whereas, surprisingly, including a picture reduces the changes of a tweet being retweeted.
The analytical lab methods that we use to grow antibiotic-resistant bacteria make a big difference in terms of recovery. However, ‘pre-analytical’ factors are just as important in determining the sensitivity of prevalence studies. We are used to the idea of studies to work out the most sensitive anatomical site to sample for detecting colonisation with antibiotic-resistant bacteria. However, there are other ‘pre-analytical’ factors that may skew the findings of prevalence studies. A study from my old research group at KCL highlights how staff and patient choices, behaviours, and demographics can be pre-analytical factors that could skew prevalence studies.