Etiology of Acute Diarrheal Disease and Antimicrobial Susceptibility Pattern in Children Younger Than 5 Years Old in Nepal
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. 2023, 108 (1), 174-180. 10.4269/ajtmh.21-1219
Diarrhea is a common cause of morbidity and mortality among children younger than 5 years in developing countries. Children from 3 to 60 months of age were recruited from two hospitals in Nepal— Bharatpur Hospital, Bharatpur, and Kanti Children’s Hospital, Kathmandu—in 2006 to 2009. Stool specimens collected from 1,200 children with acute diarrhea (cases) and 1,200 children without diarrhea (control subjects) were examined for a broad range of enteropathogens by standard microbiology, including microscopy, enzyme immunoassay for viral pathogens (adenovirus, astrovirus, and rotavirus) and protozoa (Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Entamoeba histolytica), as well as by using reverse transcription real-time polymerase for norovirus. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed using the disk diffusion method. Overall, rotavirus (22% versus 2%), norovirus (13% versus 7%), adenovirus (3% versus 0%), Shigella (6% versus 1%), enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (8% versus 4%), Vibrio (7% versus 0%), and Aeromonas (9% versus 3%) were identified significantly more frequently in cases than control subjects. Campylobacter, Plesiomonas, Salmonella, and diarrheagenic E. coli (enteropathogenic, enteroinvasive, enteroaggregative) were identified in similar proportions in diarrheal and non-diarrheal stools. Campylobacter was resistant to second-generation quinolone drugs (ciprofloxacin and norfloxacin), whereas Vibrio and Shigella were resistant to nalidixic acid and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole. This study documents the important role of rotavirus and norovirus in acute diarrhea in children younger than 5 years, followed by the bacteria Shigella, enterotoxigenic E. coli, Vibrio cholera, and Aeromonas. Data on the prevalence and epidemiology of enteropathogens identify potential pathogens for public health interventions, whereas pathogen antibiotic resistance pattern data may provide guidance on choice of therapy in clinical settings.