Infect Dis Rep. 2021 Apr 21;13(2):388-400. doi: 10.3390/idr13020037.
INTRODUCTION: Enteric fever, a systemic infection caused by Salmonella enterica Typhi and S. enterica Paratyphi is one of the most common infections in developing countries such as Nepal. Aside from irrational practices of antibiotic use, mutations in chromosomal genes encoding DNA gyrase and Topoisomerase IV and by plasmid mediated quinolone resistant (PMQR) genes are suggested mechanisms for the development of resistance to nalidixic acid and reduced susceptibility to ciprofloxacin. Regardless of high endemicity of enteric fever in Nepal, there is paucity of studies on prevalence and drug-resistance of the pathogen. Therefore, this study aimed to assess the antibiotic susceptibility pattern of Salmonella isolates and determine the minimum inhibitory concentration of ciprofloxacin.
METHODS: A total of 1298 blood samples were obtained from patients with suspected enteric fever, attending Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital (STIDH) during March-August, 2019. Blood samples were inoculated immediately into BACTEC culture bottles and further processed for isolation and identification of Salmonella Typhi and S. Paratyphi. Axenic cultures of the isolates were further subjected to antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) by using the modified Kirby-Bauer disc diffusion method based on the guidelines by CLSI. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of ciprofloxacin was determined by agar-dilution method.
RESULTS: Out of 1298 blood cultures, 40 (3.1%) were positive for Salmonella spp. among which 29 (72.5%) isolates were S. Typhi and 11 (27.5%) isolates were S. Paratyphi A. In AST, 12.5% (5/40), 15% (6/40) and 20% (8/40) of the Salmonella isolates were susceptible to nalidixic acid, ofloxacin and levofloxacin, respectively, whereas none of the isolates were susceptible to ciprofloxacin. The MIC value for ciprofloxacin ranged from 0.06-16 µg/mL in which, respectively, 5% (2/40) and 52.5% (21/40) of the isolates were susceptible and resistant to ciprofloxacin. None of the isolates showed multidrug-resistance (MDR) in this study.
CONCLUSION: This study showed high prevalence of quinolone-resistant Salmonella spp., while there was marked re-emergence of susceptibilities to traditional first option drugs. Hence, conventional first-line-drugs and third-generation cephalosporins may find potential usage as the empirical drugs for enteric fever. Although our reporting was free of MDR strains, extensive surveillance, augmentation of diagnostic facilities and treatment protocol aided by AST report are recommended for addressing the escalating drug-resistance in the country.