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Anaerobe. 2004 Oct;10(5):261-7.

Anaerobic microbiology in 198 cases of pleural empyema: a Bulgarian study.

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Department of Microbiology, Medical University, Sofia, Bulgaria.


The aim of the study was to evaluate the incidence of anaerobic bacteria in 198 patients with pleural empyema and the susceptibility of isolates to eight antibacterial agents. Isolates were identified by the Crystal anaerobes identification system, API System rapid ID 32 A and/or routine methods. Susceptibility was tested by Sceptor MIC system for anaerobic bacteria and limited agar dilution method. Anaerobic bacteria were found in 74.2% of the patients and included 247 strains within 21 genera. The predominant anaerobes were Gram-positive anaerobic cocci (52 isolates), Fusobacterium (51), microaerophilic streptococci (24), Prevotella (19) and Bacteroides species (11). Common species/groups were Fusobacterium nucleatum (in 27.2% of specimens yielding anaerobes), Micromonas micros (8.2%), Finegoldia magna (7.5%), Bacteroides fragilis group (6.8%), Peptostreptococcus anaerobius (6.1%) and F. necrophorum (5.4%). No resistance to chloramphenicol and ampicillin/sulbactam was detected. The susceptibility rates of Gram-negative anaerobic isolates to penicillin, cefoxitin, clindamycin, clarithromycin, metronidazole and tetracycline were 63.8%, 90.2%, 87.8%, 58.6%, 98.8% and 71%, and those of Gram-positive anaerobes were 79.2%, 100%, 84.3%, 68.4%, 41.9% and 75%, respectively. The wide diversity of isolated anaerobic genera and species and the susceptibility patterns of the isolates emphasize the role of the anaerobic microbiology in cases of pleural empyema.

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