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Burns. 1994 Oct;20(5):422-5.

Beta-haemolytic streptococcal infections in burned patients.

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Department of Clinical Microbiology, Scientific Institute of Emergency Medicine N. I. Pirogov, Sofia, Bulgaria.


Colonization of burn wounds by beta-haemolytic streptococci can lead to the loss of autografts. The present study investigated the beta-haemolytic streptococcal infections in burned patients treated in the Burns Centre of the Emergency Medical Institute 'N. I. Pirogov'. Sofia during a 12-month period (March 1991-March 1992). As many as 117 beta-haemolytic streptococcal strains were isolated in 114 burned patients (52 children and 62 adults). The distribution of the streptococcal strains according to their serogroup was 64 strains (54.7 per cent) group A; 34 strains (29.1 per cent) group B; nine strains (7.7 per cent) group G; five strains (4.25 per cent) group C and five other strains (4.25 per cent) group F. Antibiotic sensitivity tests demonstrated the presence of some differences among the serogroups, especially between groups A and B. The sources of the streptococcal infections were found in 26 (29.2 per cent) of the patients. Epidemiological relationships were established between the strains from one source and the wound swab. For the successful treatment of beta-haemolytic streptococcal infections in burns it is essential to bear in mind the role of non-group A beta-haemolytic streptococci (45.3 per cent according to our study).

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