© 2015, Turkish Society of Hematology. All rights reserved.Objective: Febrile neutropenic episodes (FNEs) are among the major causes of mortality in patients with hematological malignancies. Secondary infections develop either during the empirical antibiotic therapy or 1 week after cessation of therapy for a FNE. The aim of this study was to investigate the risk factors associated with secondary infections in febrile neutropenic patients. Materials and Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 750 FNEs in 473 patients between January 2000 and December 2006. Results: Secondary infections were diagnosed in 152 (20%) of 750 FNEs. The median time to develop secondary infection was 10 days (range: 2-34 days). The duration of neutropenia over 10 days significantly increased the risk of secondary infections (p<0.001). The proportion of patients with microbiologically documented infections was found to be higher in primary infections (271/750, 36%) compared to secondary infections (43/152, 28%) (p=0.038). Age; sex; underlying disease; antibacterial, antifungal, or antiviral prophylaxis; blood transfusion or bone marrow transplantation; central venous catheter; and severity of neutropenia did not differ significantly between primary and secondary infections (p>0.05). While fever of unknown origin (p=0.005) and catheter-related bacteremia (p<0.001) were less frequently observed in secondary infections, the frequency of microbiologically (p=0.003) and clinically (p<0.001) documented infections, fungal pneumonias (p<0.001), infections related to gram-positive bacteria (p=0.04) and fungi (p<0.001), and 30-day mortality rate (p<0.001) were significantly higher in cases of secondary infections (p<0.001). Conclusion: Secondary infections should be regarded as life-threatening complications of febrile neutropenia. Secondary infections represent a more severe and mortal complication and cannot be regarded just as another FNE.