African Journal of Paediatric Surgery

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Audit of antibiotic therapy in surgical neonates in a tertiary hospital in Benin City, Nigeria

OD Osifo, SE Aghahowa


Objective: To report the outcome of commonly used antibiotic combinations in surgical neonates in sub- Saharan African settings. Methods: A retrospective analysis that determines the outcome of commonly combined antibiotics in surgical neonates between
January 2006 and December 2008 at two referral paediatric surgical centres in Benin city was carried out.

Results: Ampicillin ampiclox, metronidazole, gentamicin, cefuroxime and ceftriaxone were variously combined in the management of 161 neonates with a mean age at presentation of 9.2 ± 2.6 days, mean
weight 3.1 ± 1.4 kg and a male:female ratio 1.6:1. Polymicrobial postoperative wound infections and sepsis caused by Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Neisseria meningitidis, Klebsiella pneumonia,
Pseudomonas aeroginosa and anaerobes, were mainly encountered. The most common aerobes isolated from wound cultures were S. aureus and P.
aeroginosa while the ones from that of blood cultures were E. coli and K. pneumonia. Overall postoperative infections recorded were: wound infection 19 (11.8%), sepsis 16 (9.9%) and sepsis-related deaths 6

Conclusion: Combinations of gentamicin/metronidazole/cefuroxime and gentamicin/cefuroxime were adequate for gastrointestinal and  extragastrointestinal neonatal operations, respectively, in these sub-Saharan African settings, which may be useful in similar regions.
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