Epidemiology of High-Level Gentamicin Resistant Enterococcal Isolates from Zimbabwe

Jan Evans Patterson Yale University School of Medicine, University of Zimbabwe, New Haven, Connecticut, Zimbabwe

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Michele Barry Yale University School of Medicine, University of Zimbabwe, New Haven, Connecticut, Zimbabwe

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Joel Gallant Yale University School of Medicine, University of Zimbabwe, New Haven, Connecticut, Zimbabwe

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Linda S. Mangine Yale University School of Medicine, University of Zimbabwe, New Haven, Connecticut, Zimbabwe

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Patricia Farrel Yale University School of Medicine, University of Zimbabwe, New Haven, Connecticut, Zimbabwe

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Ahmed Latif Yale University School of Medicine, University of Zimbabwe, New Haven, Connecticut, Zimbabwe

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High-level gentamicin resistance (minimum inhibitory concentration of ≥2,000 mcg/ml) in Enterococcus faecalis has not previously been reported in Africa to our knowledge. Eight of 28 (29%) rectal swab specimens obtained from hospitalized patients in Zimbabwe had gentamicin resistant enterococci. Previous exposure to penicillins or aminoglycosides were risk factors for colonization with these organisms. This study documents the presence of high-level gentamicin resistant enterococci in Africa and suggests that penicillin or aminoglycoside usage may select for gentamicin resistant enterococcal plasmids in Africa.

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