Adherence to, and outcomes of, a galactomannan screening protocol in high-risk hematology patients

S. Harricharan, K. Biederman, A.M. Bombassaro, A. Lazo-Langner, S. Elsayed, A. Fulford, J.A. Delport, A. Xenocostas



A twice-weekly galactomannan (gm) screening protocol was implemented in high-risk hematology inpatients. Study objectives were to determine adherence to the protocol, use of selected resources, and patient outcomes.


This retrospective cohort study compared outcomes of interest before and after implementation of gm screening. Adults undergoing matched related allogeneic hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation or induction chemotherapy for acute leukemia were eligible. Patients could be enrolled more than once and were evaluated as episodes. Adherence to the gm protocol was assessed in post-implementation episodes. Use of broad-spectrum antifungals (bsafs), consultations (infectious diseases, respirology), and diagnostic procedures (computed tomography imaging, bronchoalveolar lavage) were compared between phases, as were the patient outcomes of all-cause mortality and clinical success (alive and not taking a bsaf).


Of 182 episodes consecutively screened, 70 per phase were enrolled. Clinical characteristics and duration of assessment were similar for the phases. Full or partial adherence to the protocol was observed in 61 post implementation episodes (87%), with full adherence in 40 episodes (57%). More episodes in the pre-implementation phase than in the post-implementation phase involved receipt of bsafs, consultations, and diagnostics (27% vs. 7%, p = 0.02; 46% vs. 26%, p = 0.014; and 46% vs. 31%, p = 0.083 respectively). Although mortality was similar in the two phases, clinical success at the final assessment was observed in fewer pre-implementation than post-implementation episodes (79% vs. 98%, p < 0.001).


Implementation of a gm screening protocol was feasible and associated with significantly fewer episodes involving receipt of bsafs and consultations, and with significantly more episodes showing clinical success.


Adherence; antifungals; consultations; diagnostics; galactomannan; hematology; mortality; screening

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ISSN: 1198-0052 (Print) ISSN: 1718-7729 (Online)