Published: 2017-03-28

Bacteriological profile and antimicrobial sensitivity pattern in neonatal sepsis: a study from North India

Poonam Dalal, Geeta Gathwala, Mohit Gupta, Jasbir Singh


Background: Neonatal sepsis is a leading cause of neonatal mortality and continues to be a formidable problem for neonatologists and pediatricians world over.  Knowledge of microbial flora and their susceptibility will help us to decide empirical treatment for the neonatal sepsis. The objective of this study was to determine the bacteriological flora prevalent in NICU and the antimicrobial sensitivity pattern.

Methods: The blood culture reports of all the neonates with culture proven neonatal sepsis during the period July 2010 to September 2013 were reviewed retrospectively. A retrospective review in tertiary care teaching medical college. The data was entered in Excel sheets and percentages of various outcomes were calculated.

Results: A total of 28,927 babies were born during the study period and 336 among them had positive blood culture. The incidence of neonatal sepsis was 11.62 per 1,000 live births. Three hundred fifty- six microbes were isolated, out of which 50% presented as early onset sepsis and remaining as late onset sepsis. Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the most common organism encountered in both early (43.82%) and late onset sepsis (51.35%). Gram negative bacilli were sensitive to carbapenems (92%) followed by piperacillin-tazobactam (90%) whereas linezolid (90%) was most sensitive antimicrobial for gram positive cocci.

Conclusions: Pseudomonas was most commonly isolated in both early and late onset sepsis.  Gram negative bacilli were most sensitive to piperacillin-tazobactam and the carbapenems whereas linezolid and vancomycin were most effective against the gram-positive cocci. Resistance to third generation cephalosporins was rampant. Continuous surveillance for microbial flora, their antibiotic susceptibility, rational use of antibiotics and the strategy of antibiotic cycling may be of help to curtail emerging antimicrobial resistance.


Antibiotic sensitivity, Microbial flora, Neonatal sepsis, Resistance

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