Recent developments in therapy for infections of the blood stream and heart have proved the value of the sulfonamides and the antibiotics. But it must be realized that their use also serves to complicate the condition in some cases.
Before the introduction of sulfonamide compounds, patients with either staphylococcic or streptococcic bacteremia, who were 50 years of age or older, had only 1 chance in 10 to recover. Intensive use of the sulfonamides raised the rate of recovery from bacteremia to as high as 50 or 60%. Of those types of bacteremia caused by gram-positive micro-organisms, probably the two most commonly encountered are those caused by Micrococcus pyogenes and Streptococcus pyogenes. The etiological organism next in order of frequency is Diplococcus pneumoniae, followed by the indifferent strains and anaerobic strains of streptococci. Bacteremia caused by gram-negative organisms is also encountered fairly frequently. The commonest infection of this type is