You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:


Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

Can Whipple’s Disease Be Transmitted by Gastroscopes?

Bernard La Scola , MD, PhD, Jean‐Marc Rolain , PharmD, PhD, Max Maurin , MD, PhD and Didier Raoult , MD, PhD
Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
Vol. 24, No. 3 (March 2003), pp. 191-194
DOI: 10.1086/502188
Stable URL:
Page Count: 5
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Item Type
Can Whipple’s Disease Be Transmitted by Gastroscopes?
Preview not available


OBJECTIVE.  To determine whether disinfection protocols currently used for gastroscopes are effective against cultures of Tropheryma whipplei. DESIGN.  The bactericidal activity of 2% glutaraldehyde and two peracetic acids on the Twist‐Marseille strain of T. whipplei grown in cell monolayers was determined. PATIENTS.  Two patients who were diagnosed as having Whipple’s disease 3 years after they had had intestinal biopsies. RESULTS.  The disinfectants reduced bacteria by approximately 2 log10 to 3 log10 after 5 to 60 minutes of contact. CONCLUSION.  The bactericidal activity of a disinfectant is usually considered significant if it causes a 5 log10 or greater reduction in viable bacterial titers. Disinfecting gastroscopes with 2% glutaraldehyde or peracetic acids for 20 minutes may be insufficient to prevent transmission of T. whipplei on the instruments or stop false‐positive results on polymerase chain reaction.

Page Thumbnails