Prevalence of carbapenemase-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae at a tertiary care hospital in Kathmandu, Nepal

Trop Med Health. 2021 Sep 26;49(1):78. doi: 10.1186/s41182-021-00368-2.


AIM: Although carbapenem is the last-resort drug for treating drug-resistant Gram-negative bacterial infections, prevalence of carbapenem-resistant bacteria has substantially increased worldwide owing to irrational use of antibiotics particularly in developing countries like Nepal. Therefore, this study was aimed to determine the prevalence of carbapenemase-producing K. pneumoniae and to detect the carbapenemase genes (blaNDM-2 and blaOXA-48) in at a tertiary care hospital in Nepal.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A hospital-based cross-sectional study was carried out from June 2018 to January 2019 at the Microbiology Laboratory of Annapurna Neurological Institute and Allied Sciences, Kathmandu, Nepal. Different clinical samples were collected and cultured in appropriate growth media. Biochemical tests were performed for the identification of K. pneumoniae. Antibiotic susceptibility testing (AST) was performed by the Kirby-Bauer disc diffusion method. The modified Hodge test (MHT) was performed to detect carbapenemase producers. The plasmid was extracted by the modified alkaline hydrolysis method. Carbapenemase-producing K. pneumoniae were further confirmed by detecting blaNDM-2 and blaOXA-48 genes by PCR using specific forward and reverse primers followed by gel electrophoresis.

RESULTS: Out of the total 720 samples, 38.9% (280/720) were culture positive. K. pneumoniae was the most predominant isolate 31.4% (88/280). Of 88 K. pneumoniae isolates, 56.8% (50/88) were multi-drug resistant (MDR), and 51.1% (45/88) were MHT positive. Colistin showed the highest sensitivity (100%; 88/88), followed by tigecycline (86.4%; 76/88). blaNDM-2 and blaOXA-48 genes were detected in 24.4% (11/45) and 15.5% (7/45) of carbapenemase-producing K. pneumoniae isolates, respectively.

CONCLUSION: The rate of MDR and carbapenemase production was high in the K. pneumoniae isolates. Colistin and tigecycline could be the drug of choice for the empirical treatments of MDR and carbapenemase-producing K. pneumoniae. Our study provides a better understanding of antibiotic resistance threat and enables physicians to select the most appropriate antibiotics.

PMID:34565485 | DOI:10.1186/s41182-021-00368-2