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Community-acquired soft-tissue pyogenic abscesses in Mulago hospital, Kampala: Bacteria isolated and antibiotic sensitivity

PA Ongom
EA Obuku
B Achan


Background: Clinical practice, for a long time, has dwelt on study and management of pyogenic abscesses without distinction between nosocomial and community-acquired types. This study aimed at identifying the bacteria isolated from community-acquired acute subcutaneous and soft tissue pyogenic abscesses. It also determined their sensitivity to a wide range of antibiotics.
Methods: The cross-sectional study was conducted in Mulago hospital, between August and December, 2011. Consecutive, convenient sampling was used to attain a sample size of 130 subjects, with all age groups eligible. They were treated for the abscesses by incision and drainage. The pus was subjected to
bacterial culturing and drug sensitivity testing. Data was analysed using STATA version 11.2.
Results: The median age was 21.6 years; with females constituting 43.9%, and 10.8% were HIV positive persons. The predominant organism isolated was Staphylococcus aureus (53.9%), followed by coliform organisms (14-1%). Mixed infections, mostly with Staphylococcus aureus, constituted 8.6%. Staphylococcus aureus was most susceptible to ciprofloxacin and showed greatest resistance to chloramphenicol. Coliform organisms were most susceptible amikacin and showed greatest resistance to augmentin.
Conclusions: The predominant bacterium isolated from these pyogenic abscesses is Staphylococcus aureus. It is most susceptible to ciprofloxacin and resistant to chloramphenicol. There is benefit in conducting a larger study with more antibiotic sensitivity tests and specific bacterial type dentification. Recommendations can then be made for appropriate antibiotic policies.

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eISSN: 2073-9990