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Middle East J Anaesthesiol. 2013 Oct;22(3):293-300.

Rate and pattern of antibiotic resistance in microbiological cultures of sepsis patients in a low-middle-income country's ICU.



In this prospective, observational study, the rate of antibiotic resistance in cultures sampled from sepsis patients was determined in an intensive care unit of a low-middle income country.


Critically ill patients suffering from bacterial sepsis were eligible for enrollment. Aside from demographic, disease-related and sepsis-specific parameters, the type of microbiological sample and cultured microorganism as well as the resistance pattern (extensively resistant bacteria, multi-drug resistant bacteria) were documented. Descriptive statistical methods, parametric and non-parametric tests were used.


215 sepsis patients were included. 193 ofthe 410 cultured organisms (47.1%) showed antibiotic resistance [extensively resistant bacteria, n = 90 (11%); multi-drug resistant bacteria, n = 103 (25.1%)]. 51.6% of the patients were infected by > or = 1 resistant bacteria. Bacteria with an exceptionally high rate of antibiotic resistance were Acinetobacter baumannii (90%), Enterobacter spp (60%) and coagulase-negative Staphylococci (60%). Patients infected with resistant bacteria more often received inadequate empirical antibiotic therapy (36.9 vs. 13.5%, p < 0.001), required mechanical ventilation (66.7 vs. 42.3%, p < 0.001) and renal replacement therapy (28.8 vs. 9.6%, p < 0.001) more frequently, and had a longer stay in the intensive care unit [5 (3-9.5) vs. 5 (2-8)%, p < 0.001] than patients with sepsis due to non-resistant bacteria. There was a trend towards a higher mortality in patients with resistant bacteria (43.2 vs. 31.7%, p = 0.09).


Resistant bacteria were detected in up to 50% of microbiological samples from critically ill sepsis patients in the intensive care unit of a low-middle-income country. Antibiotic resistance appears to be a relevant problem of sepsis management in a resource-limited setting.

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