Coryneforms are ubiquitous bacteria that encompass a broad spectrum of genera with similar microscopic morphology. Although the worldwide incidence of diphtheria is on the decline as a result of immunization, nondiphtheria coryneform infections due to Corynebacterium jeikeium, Actinomyces israelii, Rhodococcus equi, and Propionibacterium acnes are on the rise, particularly among those who are predisposed as a consequence of an immunocompromised state and bioprosthetic material. Taxonomical changes over time have led to some misclassification of cases. However, I report the first case of prosthetic joint infection due to a vancomycin resistant coryneform, Microbacterium resistens, and a literature review of the 32 conglomerate cases of Microbacterium species infection reported to date. Clinicians and microbiology laboratory personnel should have heightened awareness that such organisms should not be automatically deemed skin contaminants, as in the proper clinical context they may represent true pathogens.
From the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), Bethesda, MD.
Correspondence to: Anil A. Panackal, MD, ScM, FACP, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), 4301 Jones Bridge Rd, Bethesda, MD 20814. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The author has no funding or conflict of interest to disclose.
This study was not supported by any grants.
According to the institutional review board chair, Dr. Buck Davis, at Suburban Hospital, where this case was presented and was identified, this study required no ethics approval or informed consent as it is a case report without any unique patient identifiers. I had access to all the pertinent data for the case and take full responsibility for the integrity of this report.