J Microbiol Immunol Infect. 2021 Jun 21:S1684-1182(21)00105-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jmii.2021.05.008. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: Streptococcus pneumoniae causes pneumonia and other invasive diseases, and is a leading cause of mortality in the elderly population. The present study aimed to provide current antimicrobial resistance and epidemiological profiles of S. pneumoniae infections in Taiwan.
METHODS: A total of 252 nonduplicate S. pneumoniae isolates were collected from patients admitted to 16 hospitals in Taiwan between January 2017 and December 2019, and were analyzed. The minimum inhibitory concentration of antibiotics was determined using the Vitek 2 automated system for antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Furthermore, epidemiological profiles of S. pneumoniae infections were analyzed.
RESULTS: Among the strains analyzed, 88% were recognized as invasive pneumococcal strains. According to the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute criteria for non-meningitis, the prevalence of penicillin-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae demonstrated a declining trend from 43.6% in 2017 to 17.2% in 2019. However, the rate of penicillin-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae was 85.7% based on the criteria for meningitis. Furthermore, the prevalence of ceftriaxone-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae was 62.7% based on the criteria for meningitis. Isolates demonstrated higher susceptibility toward doripenem and ertapenem than toward meropenem and imipenem. An increased rate of non-susceptibility toward levofloxacin was observed in southern Taiwan (15.1%) and elderly patients (≥65 years; 11.4%). Most isolates were susceptible to vancomycin and linezolid.
CONCLUSION: Empirical treatment with ceftriaxone monotherapy for pneumococcal meningitis should be carefully monitored owing to its high non-susceptibility rate. The susceptibility rates of most isolates to penicillin (used for treating non-meningitis pneumococcal diseases), carbapenems (ertapenem and doripenem), respiratory quinolones (moxifloxacin and levofloxacin), vancomycin, and linezolid suggested the potential of these antibiotics in treating pneumococcal diseases in Taiwan.