Investigating the Prevalence of Shigella Species and Their Antibiotic Resistance Pattern in Children With Acute Diarrhea Referred to Selected Hospitals in Tehran, Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Biology Research Center, Faculty of Basic Sciences, Imam Hossain Comprehensive University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Pathobiology, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Clinical Microbiology, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran



Introduction: Shigellosis is a major health problem, especially in developing countries and in children under 5 years of age. The prevalence of Shigella species in a region can be considered as an indicator for hygiene level of that region. Due to the lack of an efficient vaccine, antibiotic therapy is the main strategy to combat the disease. In this study, the prevalence of the Shigella species and their antibiotic resistant pattern has been investigated.
Materials and Methods: A total of 300 diarrheal stool samples were collected from 4 different hospitals in Tehran during a period of 6 months June to November 2016. Bacterial identification and species discrimination was performed using biochemical and serotyping tests. Antibiotic resistance patterns of isolates were obtained using Bauer-Kirby method.
Results: 8.7% of all diarrheal cases were caused by Shigella species (5% by Shigella sonnei and 3.7% by Shigella flexneri). Antibiogram test revealed that the isolates were more sensitive or intermediate to ciprofloxacin (92.3%), while most of the isolates were resistant to tetracycline.
Conclusions: The prevalence of Shigella species has changed in Tehran. Since antibiotics are the treatment of choice to combat these pathogens, also, because of the emergence of the antibiotic resistance Shigella strains, there is a need for regularly updated regional antibiotic sensitivity patterns of the pathogen to guide therapy.


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