A patient with antecedent coccidioidal pulmonary cavitary disease who developed an empyema due to Kingella kingae prompted our analysis of the literature regarding this unusual bacterial pathogen. Formerly classified among other genera and considered a nonpathogen, K. kingae has been increasingly recognized as a cause of human infection. While the most commonly diagnosed infections due to this organism are endocarditis and septic arthritis, there have also been isolated reports of bacteremia, diskitis, abscesses, meningitis, and oropharyngeal infections. The treatment of choice is penicillin, to which K. kingae strains are uniformly susceptible. Recognition of the potential pathogenicity of this microorganism in appropriate clinical settings will probably result in more prompt and specific therapy.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Received for publication 14September 1988and in revisedform 10 January 1989. This work was supported in part by the Coleman Leukemia Research Fund. Dr. Morrison is the recipient ofan American Cancer Society Regular Clinical Fellowship. The authors thank Dr. John Fisher for critically reviewing the manuscript and offering editorial assistance. Please address requests for reprints to Dr. Vicki A. Morrison, Division of Medical Oncology, Box 286, University of Minnesota Health Sciences Center, Harvard Street at East River Road, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455.