Antimicrobial sensitivity patterns of enteric fever in Pakistan: a comparison of years 2009 and 2019


Khurram SaleemSana ZafarAqeela Rashid


Background: Pakistan is one of the endemic regions for typhoid fever and paratyphoid fever. This study aimed to identify the evolving antimicrobial sensitivity patterns of Salmonella species causing enteric fever and its implications on the clinical prescribing of antimicrobials.

Methods: This was a retrospective descriptive study conducted at a university hospital. Antimicrobial resistance was defined in terms of non-resistant, multidrug resistant (MDR) and extended drug resistant (XDR) as per WHO guidance. Data were collected from the years 2009 and 2019. Chi squared was applied to test for statistical significance (p < 0.05).

Results: A total of 200 patients (100 from 2009 and 100 from 2019) were included in the study. Non-resistant enteric fever cases reduced from 100% in 2009 to 44% in 2019, whereas the MDR and XDR enteric fever cases increased to 16% and 40%, respectively (p < 0.05). Cross tabulation carried out for individual drugs showed an independent rise in the sensitivities of individual first-line antimicrobials.

Conclusion: Antimicrobial resistant enteric fever has become a big challenge for Pakistan. The choice of antibiotic prescription has narrowed down to broader spectrum antimicrobials making it difficult to treat, leading to increased morbidity and mortality.

Keywords: MDR; XDR; antimicrobial resistance; enteric fever; extended drug-resistant enteric fever; multidrug-resistant enteric fever.

Click here to read the article, published in The Journal of the Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh.