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Pneumococcal and Haemophilus influenzae meningitis in a children's hospital in Ethiopia: serotypes and susceptibility patterns

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Abstract:

Summary

Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae are responsible for most pyogenic meningitis cases in children in Ethiopia. Resistance of S. pneumoniae and H. influenzae to penicillin and chloramphenicol respectively has been reported globally. Resistance has been related to specific serotypes of S. pneumoniae or to beta-lactamase-producing H. influenzae strains. This study describes the serotypes/ serogroups and susceptibility pattern of the two organisms causing meningitis in Ethiopian children. There were 120 cases of meningitis caused by S. pneumoniae (46) and H. influenzae (74) over a period of 3 years (1993–95). Nineteen children died from pneumococcal and 28 from haemophilus meningitis. Penicillin-resistant pneumococcal meningitis (4/8 = 50%) caused a greater mortality rate than penicillin-susceptible pneumococcal meningitis (15/38 = 39%). Common serotypes accounting for 76% of S. pneumoniae were type 14, 19F, 20, 1, 18 and 5; and serotypes 14, 19F and 7 (accounting for 17% of strains) showed intermediate resistance to penicillin G. 97% of the H. influenzae isolates were type b, and in only two cases beta-lactamase-producing. 72% of isolates of the S. pneumoniae we identified belong to serotypes preventable by a 9-valent vaccine. Our study highlighs the possibility of resistant pyogenic meningitis in children in Ethiopia due to emerging resistant strains of S. pneumoniae and H. influenzae isolates.

Keywords: Ethiopia; H. influenzae; S. pneumoniae; children; penicillin; resistance

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-3156.1999.00417.x

Affiliations: 1: Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Faculty of Medicine, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 2: South African Institute for Medical Research, and MRC/WITS Pneumococcal Disease Research Unit, Johannesburg, South Africa

Publication date: June 1, 1999

bsc/tmih/1999/00000004/00000006/art00001
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