Bacterial pathogens in non-CF bronchiectasis

Up to 64% of patients with non-CF bronchiectasis suffer from chronic bacterial infections, most commonly Haemophilus influenzae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The best way to determine appropriate treatment is by culturing each patient as early as possible to determine the pathogenic bacteria.1,2
Higher bacterial loads are associated with more severe respiratory disease symptoms, greater risk of exacerbations, and more frequent unscheduled hospitalizations.3

Pseudomonas aeruginosa

  • 3 times increase in death6
  • 7 times increase in hospitalizations6
  • Poorer lung function7,8
  • More frequent exacerbations7,8
  • Poor quality of life7,8

Haemophilus influenzae

  • One of the most common bacteria in non-CF bronchiectasis9
  • More common in younger patients10

Other pathogens

  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Stenotrophomonas maltophilia
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae
  • Serratia marcescens
  • Moraxella catarrhalis


Exacerbations take their toll both financially and in their effect on human lives.

See the impact of exacerbations  

Get the latest information on the diagnosis and management of non-CF bronchiectasis.

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  1. Angrill J, Agusti C, de Celis R, et al. Bacterial colonization in patients with bronchiectasis: microbiological pattern and risk factors. Thorax. 2002;57:15-19.
  2. McShane PJ, Naureckas ET, Tino G, Strek M. Non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2013;188:647-656.
  3. Brodt AM, Stovold E, Zhang L. Inhaled antibiotics for stable non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: a systematic review. Eur Respir J. 2014;44:382-393.
  4. Aksamit TR, O'Donnell AE, Barker A, et al. Adult bronchiectasis patients: a first look at the United States bronchiectasis research registry. Chest. 2017;151(5):982-992.
  5. McDonnell MJ, Jary HR, Perry A, et al. Non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: a longitudinal retrospective observational cohort study of Pseudomonas persistence and resistance. Respir Med. 2015;109:716-726.
  6. Finch S, McDonnell MJ, Abo-Leyah H, Aliberti S, Chalmers JD. A comprehensive analysis of the impact of Pseudomonas aeruginosa colonization on prognosis in adult bronchiectasis. Ann Am Thorac Soc. 2015;12:1602-1611.
  7. Yap VL, Metersky ML. New therapeutic options for noncystic fibrosis bronchiectasis. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2015;28(2):171-176.
  8. Yang JW, Fan LC, Lu HW, Miao XY, Mao B, Xu JF. Efficacy and safety of long-term inhaled antibiotic for patients with noncystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: a meta-analysis. Clin Respir J. 2016;10(6):731-739.
  9. Chawla K, Vishwanath S, Manu M, Lazer B. Influence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa on exacerbation in patients with bronchiectasis. J Global Infect Dis. 2015;7:18-22.
  10. Izhakian S, Wasser WG, Fuks L, et al. Lobar distribution in non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis predicts bacteriologic pathogen treatment. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2016;35(5):791-796.