Epidemiology of Saccharomyces fungemia: A systematic review

Kalaiselvi Vinayagamoorthy, Kalyana Chakravarthy Pentapati, Hariprasath Prakash

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Fungemia due to Saccharomyces species is reported in considerable numbers, and the increase is attributed to using Saccharomyces boulardii probiotics in clinical settings. The present systematic review addresses the underlying diseases and risk factors in Saccharomyces fungemia patients, along with the treatment and outcome of the disease. The MEDLINE, Scopus, Embase, and Web of Science databases were searched systematically with appropriate keywords from June 2005 to March 2022. This review identified 117 Saccharomyces fungemia cases; 108 cases were included in the analysis. Saccharomyces fungemia is commonly seen in patients treated with S. boulardii probiotics (n = 73, 67.6%), and 35 (32.4%) patients did not receive probiotic therapy. The underlying disease and risk factors significantly associated with S. boulardii probiotic-associated fungemia were intensive care unit stay (n = 34, 31.5%), total parenteral nutrition or enteral feeding (n = 32, 29.6%), patients with gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea (n = 23, 21.3%), and diabetes mellitus (n = 14, 13.0%). In patients without probiotic therapy, immunosuppression (n = 14, 13.0%), gastrointestinal surgery (n = 5, 4.6%), and intravenous drug use (n = 5, 4.6%) were the significant risk factors for Saccharomyces fungemia. The all-cause mortality rate of the total cohort is 36.1%. No significant variation in the mortality rate is observed between S. boulardii probiotic treated patients (n = 29, 26.9%) and patients without probiotic therapy (n = 10, 9.3%). In conclusion, S. boulardii probiotic therapy in debilitated critical care patients may have contributed to increased Saccharomyces fungemia cases. Further, clinicians should be vigilant in preventing S. boulardii fungemia in patients with prophylactic probiotic therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbermyad014
JournalMedical Mycology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 01-02-2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Infectious Diseases


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