What is it about?
We report what we consider to be the first case of an abscess of the thyroid gland due to Campylobacter fetus subsp. fetus (C. fetus) in a patient suffering from hyperthyroidism. C. fetus is known as a rare and opportunistic pathogen in humans, causing a broad variety of systemic infections. Acquisition by humans is thought to occur through contact with animals or animal products and to start as a gastro-intestinal colonization.
Why is it important?
The detection of C. fetus in stool is challenging, since culture efforts are generally directed in order to fulfil growth requirements of C. jejuni, a much more common enteric pathogen. Detection of C. fetus in non-stool samples is even more challenging since routine culture doesn’t imply prolonged incubation (>72h), selective media and microaerophilic conditions. It is therefore not unlikely that human infections caused by C. fetus occur more often than generally assumed.
The following have contributed to this page: Dr Emmanuel De Laere