Antimicrobial Resistance among Enteric Pathogens
Each year diarrheal disease results in significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. In the United States diarrhea is associated with 1.5 outpatient visits, 200,000 hospitalizations and approximately 300 deaths per year. Worldwide in children under 5 years of age, over 1.5 billion diarrhea episodes and approximately 2 million deaths occur annually, although mortality due to diarrhea has been reduced significantly worldwide by oral rehydration therapy (King et al. 2003). Enteric infections generally are self-limited conditions that require fluid and electrolyte therapy, but with certain bacterial and protozoal agents, antimicrobial therapy should be considered. Antimicrobial agents should be prescribed with an appreciation of their limitations, specifically the potential for development of bacterial resistance which occurs following widespread use of antimicrobial agents in humans and animals (Johnson et al. 2006; Gallay et al. 2007). Because resistance among enteric pathogens can spread rapidly, constant monitoring of susceptibility patterns of bacterial isolates is critical for selection of appropriate antimicrobial agents for therapy when indicated (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NARMS 2006). The purpose of this article is to review limitations of and indications for antimicrobial therapy of enteric infections with emphasis on antimicrobial resistance.
KeywordsAntimicrobial Agent Antimicrobial Therapy Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome Antimicrob Agent Enteric Pathogen
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