Proteus vulgaris

Proteus vulgaris is a Gram-negative, rod-shaped bacteria of the family Morganellaceae and is classified in the enterobacteria.

Proteus vulgaris can (in rare cases) cause nosocomial infections. These include:

  • Urinary tract infections

  • Respiratory tract infections

  • Wound infections

  • Skin infections

  • Sepsis

Proteus vulgaris is part of the normal intestinal flora of humans. The bacterium is involved in most decomposition processes and occurs in the soil, in wastewater, and on animal carcasses.

Relevance of pathogen in transmission in endoscopy

  • Gastroenterology: Low

  • Pulmonology: Low

  • Ear, nose, and throat: Not relevant

  • Urology: Low

Relevance for endoscope surveillance

  • High concern organism

Transmission route

Transmission can occur via direct or indirect contact with contaminated persons or objects.

Resistance to antibiotics

The antibiotic resistance of Proteus vulgaris against a variety of antibiotic classes has considerably increased in recent years. For example, the bacterium is resistant to beta-lactams.

Sources and further readings

  1. Bloch J et al. Brain abscesses during Proteus vulgaris bacteremia, Neurol Sci. 2011 Aug;32(4):661-3.

  2. Cêtre JC et al. Outbreaks of contaminated broncho-alveolar lavage related to intrinsically defective bronchoscopes, J Hosp Infect. 2005 Sep;61(1):39-45.

  3. Hygienemaßnahmen bei Infektionen oder Besiedlung mit multiresistenten gramnegativen Stäbchen. Kommission für Krankenhaushygiene und Infektionsprävention (KRINKO) beim Robert Koch-Institut (RKI). Bundesgesundheitsbl 2012 ∙ 55: 1311-1354.

  4. O'Hara CM et al. Classification, identification, and clinical significance of Proteus, Providencia, and Morganella, Clin Microbiol Rev. 2000 Oct;13(4):534-46.