Susceptibility of Beta-Haemolytic Escherichia coli to Commonly Used Antibiotics in Selected Hospitals in Delta State, Southern Nigeria

Antimicrobial resistance in the treatment of urinary tract infections is a major health problem. This study evaluates the pattern of susceptibility of pathogens commonly responsible for urinary tract infections (UTIs) to commonly used antimicrobial agents. Midstream urine samples of 80 patients (30 males and 50 females) and 20 diarrhea samples from 10 males and 10 females, who were attending clinics in Eku, Sapele and Abraka general hospitals, Delta state, between September and October 2007 were examined. Susceptibility of the urine and diarrhea bacteria isolates to ten commonly used antibiotics were investigated. Thirty five Escherichia coli isolates were obtained from the urine samples, out of which were nine hemolytic strains (25.7%), and 10 E. coli isolates from diarrhea, out of which was one strain (10%). All the hemolytic strains exhibited a significantly high resistance to septrin, sparfloxacin, amoxicillin, streptomycin, chloramphenicol but were either moderately or highly sensitive to the augmentin and gentamycin. I conclude that the incidence of hemolytic strains in urinary tract infection was higher than that observed from diarrhea because Escherichia coli strains that cause urinary tract infection typically produce hemolysins which is an important virulent factorin pathogenesis of infection, whereas those strains that are part of the gastro intestinal micro flora may not produce hemolysins and majority of the antimicrobial agents that are commonly used to treat UTIs caused by Escherichia coli in the hospitals are no longer effective due to hemolysin production. Therefore, the development and strict management of antimicrobial policy, and surveillance for resistant organisms should be given priority in Nigeria.


Itohan S Aghemwenhio, Adesoji A Timilehin and Alpheus GA

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