Ethiopian Journal of Health Sciences

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Isolation and antimicrobial susceptibility profile of Shigella and Salmonella species from children with acute diarrhoea in Mekelle Hospital and Semen Health Center, Ethiopia

Gebremichael Gebreegziabher, Daniel Asrat, Yimtubezinash W/Amanuel, Tesfalem Hagos


Background: Salmonella and Shigella remain the major contributors to acute enteric infections and diarrhoea. Hence, the objective of this study was to isolate and determine the antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of Shigella and Salmonella
species from children with acute diarrhoea in Mekelle Hospital and Semen Health Center.

Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted among 260 children with acute diarrhoea from November 2011 to March 2012 in Mekelle, Ethiopia. Stool specimen was collected from all study participants who presented with acute diarrhoea. Microscopy, culture and confirmatory identification were done by the pattern of biochemical reactions using a standard bacterial identification system (API 20E, BioMerieux, Marcy-l’Etoile, France) and polyvalent (Poly O and H) antiseras for Salmonella species and Vi for S. typhi. Isolated colonies were assessed for antimicrobial susceptibility profile using disk diffusion method. Data was entered and analyzed using SPSS version 16.0 software.

Results: Out of the 260 study participants, 145(55.8%) were males while 115(44.2%) were females. The majority of the patients (44.2%) were of children under five years old. A total of 120 enteropathogens were isolated. The frequency of isolation was 19(7.3%), 18(6.9%) and 83(31.9%) for Salmonella species, Shigella species and intestinal parasites respectively. Most of the Shigella isolates were resistant to ampicillin (88.9%), Tetracycline (77.8), cotrimoxazole (55.6%) and chloramphenicol (55.6%). Among the Salmonella isolates, the highest resistance was observed to ampicillin (89.5%), Tetracycline (89.5%), chloramphenicol (78.9%) and cotrimoxazole (57.9%). Multi-drug resistance was noted in 19(100%) and 16(88.9%) of Salmonella and Shigella species respectively.

Conlcusions: Shigella and Salmonella are still challenging pathogens in children < 5 years of age. High antibiotic resistance was observed among both isolates to ampicillin, tetracycline, chloramphenicol and cotrimoxazole.

Keywords: Diarrhoea, Salmonella, Shigella, Antimicrobial susceptibility, Ethiopia
AJOL African Journals Online