Objectives: The aims of this study were to determine the prevalence of pathogens causing bacterial hospital-acquired conjunctivitis (HAC) and to provide information about antibiotic susceptibility patterns among inpatient infants.
Methods: Infants with gram-negative (Group 1) or -positive (Group 2) bacterial conjunctivitis were included. Of 365 patients, 98 tested positive for bacteria; all data were collected retrospectively. Isolated pathogens and antibiotic susceptibility patterns were also obtained from the patient records.
Results: The most common pathogens were gram-negative bacteria, found in Group 1 (n=80, 82%). Group 2 included 18 (18%) infants with gram-positive conjunctivitis. There were no significant differences in demographics or clinical characteristics between the two groups. Ten neonates in Group 1 (12.5%) and two neonates in Group 2 (11.1%) had concomitant sepsis (p=0.60). In gram-positive conjunctivitis cases, Staphylococcus aureus (50%) was the predominant pathogen. In gram-negative conjunctivitis cases, Pseudomonas species (46.2%) was the most common pathogen, followed by Klebsiella species (27.5%) and Escherichia coli (12.5%). In gram-negative bacteria, the antibiotic resistance rates to gentamicin, netilmicin, and second- and third-generation fluoroquinolones were 48.1%, 14.3%, and 13% and 8.6%, respectively. We did not observe any unresponsive or complicated conjunctivitis cases.
Conclusion: Surveillance is essential in determining the rate of HAC and identifying the factors associated with the infection, and it is important to plan and evaluate prevention strategies.