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A Journal on Pediatrics, Neonatology, Adolescent Medicine,
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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Minerva Pediatrica 2003 October;55(5):439-46

language: Italian

Nasopharyngeal colonization of streptococcus pneumoniae in healthy children: percentage of carriers, serotypes distribution and antibiotic resistance

Schettini Jr F., Miragliotta G., Carucci A., Mosca A., Del Vecchio G. C., Laforgia N., De Mattia D.


Aim. The nasopharyngeal carriage of Streptococcus pneumoniae is an important risk factor for pneumococcal diseases. Data regarding prevalence and serotype distribution of this pathogen are lacking in our population.
Methods. Experimental design: longitudinal observational cohort study. Setting: healthy children aged 1-7 years attending day-care centers and schools of a district of a Southern Italy city. Measures: the nasopharyngeal colonization rate of Streptococcus pneumoniae as well as its antibiotic susceptibility was determined.
Results. Of 317 nasopharyngeal cultures obtained, 18.29% of the cultures were positive for Streptococcus pneumoniae; 60.34% of the isolates were serotypes 19A, 19F, 14, 6B, or 23F; 8.62% of the strains were intermediately resistant to penicillin. Erythromycin-resistance was observed in 65.51% of the micro-organisms isolated and particularly serotypes 19, 14, and 6 were more erythromycin-resistant than organisms of other serotypes. Co-trimoxazole resistance was detected in 17.24% of the strains. All the strains resulted uniformly susceptible to cefotaxime and ceftriaxone.
Conclusion. The high rate of nasopharyngeal carriage of Streptococcus pneumoniae, along with the resistance to antibiotics widely used in the community, suggests the importance of an epidemiological surveillance as well as the application of new vaccine strategies.

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