MRSA: The leading pathogen of orthopedic infection in a tertiary care hospital, South India

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African Health Sciences


Background: The rate of infection is high and heterogeneous in developing countries. This study aimed to find the rate and pattern of infection in a tertiary care hospital with a goal to improve the infection control practices. Methods: The study was conducted in the orthopedic units of a multispecialty teaching hospital. Medical records of major orthopedic surgery adult patients without immunosuppression state were included. The bacterial culture report of the wound swabs were noted over a period of one year. The bacterial culture testing was performed by a recommended method. Results: Among 2,249 orthopedic surgery patients, 83.7% were males, 49.1% had open wounds during admission and 32.2% patients were infected. Majority (64.2%) of the injuries were in the lower limb with 19.4% patients having undergone multiple surgeries during hospitalization. A total of 946 pathogens were grown from 725 specimens. Staphylococcus aureus was the maximum (48.4%) followed by Pseudomonas aeruginosa (26.3%) and E coli (16.7%). Among them, 57.3% were Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and was the leading pathogen causing infection among orthopedic patients. Conclusion: MRSA infection was high. Consequent to this, an interventional program entitled ‘Extended Infection Control Measures’ was designed to reduce the burden of infection.

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