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Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology
Volume 26 (2015), Issue 2, Pages 103-104
Case Report

A Cluster of Bacillus cereus Bacteremia Cases among Injection Drug Users

Michael A Benusic,1 Natasha M Press,2 Linda MN Hoang,3,4 and Marc G Romney4,5

1Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Department of Family Practice and Community Medicine, St Michael’s Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2Division of Infectious Diseases, University of British Columbia, Canada
3BC Public Health Microbiology and Reference Laboratory, Provincial Health Services Authority, Canada
4Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of British Columbia, Canada
5Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, St Paul’s Hospital/Providence Health Care, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Copyright © 2015 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Bacillus cereus is a ubiquitous spore-forming organism that is infrequently implicated in extraintestinal infections. The authors report three cases of B cereus bacteremia among injection drug users presenting within one month to an urban tertiary care hospital. Treatment with intravenous vancomycin was successful in all three cases. While temporal association suggested an outbreak, molecular studies of patient isolates using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis did not suggest a common source. A review of the association of B cereus infections with heroin use and treatment of this pathogen is provided.