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J Antimicrob Chemother. 2003 Feb;51(2):323-31.

Prevalence of resistance to ampicillin, gentamicin and vancomycin in Enterococcus faecalis and Enterococcus faecium isolates from clinical specimens and use of antimicrobials in five Nordic hospitals.

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1
University of Tromsø and University Hospital of North Norway (UNN), Norway.

Abstract

We determined the species distribution and prevalence of ampicillin resistance, high-level gentamicin resistance (HLGR) and vancomycin resistance among clinical enterococcal isolates from five Nordic laboratories (Bergen, Tromsø, Uppsala, Aarhus and Reykjavik). Isolates represented three different groups: (i) all blood culture isolates from 1999; (ii) consecutive in-patient isolates (maximum 40); and (iii) consecutive outpatient isolates (maximum 40) collected during March to May 2000. Antimicrobial use data were collected at the national and hospital level. A high proportion (31.4%) of Enterococcus faecium was detected among blood culture isolates, in contrast to only 4.2% among isolates from outpatients. Ampicillin resistance was not found in Enterococcus faecalis, in contrast to 48.8% in E. faecium isolates. HLGR rates varied considerably between laboratories (1.1-27.6%). Acquired vancomycin resistance was not detected. There were no significant differences in the prevalences of HLGR between in-patient and outpatient isolates at individual hospitals. A cluster of clonally related ampicillin-resistant and HLGR E. faecium isolates was demonstrated in one of the hospitals. The lowest level of hospital antimicrobial use, the lowest proportion of E. faecium and the lowest prevalence of resistance were observed in Reykjavik. The study showed a relatively low level of resistance in enterococci, as compared with most European countries and the USA. However, there were large differences between hospitals with regard to the relative proportion of E. faecium isolates, their susceptibility to ampicillin and gentamicin, as well as the prevalence of HLGR in E. faecalis isolates. This indicates a potential for further improvement of antibiotic policies, and possibly hospital infection control, to maintain the low resistance levels observed in these countries.

PMID:
12562698
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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