Nasal carriage of S. aureus among hospital personnel of a secondary general hospital

Abstract number: r1998

Sergouniotis  F., Sergounioti  A., Basdeki  A., Sergouniotis  P., Papoulia  E., Petinaki  E.

S. aureus nasal carriage in hospital personnel has been identified as an important risk factor for nosocomial infections.


The aim of our study was to determine the incidence of S. aureus nasal carriage in the personnel of a Secondary General Hospital (120 beds), without significant prevalence of staphylococcal infections in it, and the investigation of the genotypical and phenotypical characters of the strains recovered.


A total of 40 doctors and nurses (mostly of the surgical section of the Hospital) were examined during autumn 2005. Samples taken from the anterior nares were cultured using appropriate media. The strains' identification was performed by catalase production, 24-hour coagulase test, and the API Staph system (Biomerieux, Marcy L'Étoile, France). All the strains were tested for the production of PBP2a (Slidex MRSA, Biomerieux, Marcy L'Étoile, France), their susceptibility to antibiotics was performed by the disk diffusion technique and the results were interpreted according to the criteria of the N.C.C.L.S. Moreover, molecular analysis for the mecA gene and the Panton-Valentine leucocidin (PVL) - encoding genes, lukF and lukS, was performed by PCR.


1)The incidence of S. aureus nasal carriage among hospital personnel was 20%, and presented to be higher among doctors(31%– 5 out of 16) than among nurses (12.5%– 3 out of 24). 2) The specimens' cultures yielded 5 MSSA and 3 MRSA with total prevalence 12.5% and 7.5% respectively. 3) Three strains carried the mecA gene and produced PBP2a, whereas another 2 strains produced PBP2a but lacked the mecA gene. 4) Only one strain produced PVL leucocidin, isolated from the nasal specimen of a surgeon. The PVL-positive S. aureus belongs to MLST-80 clone. This clone circulated in Greece since 2002 and recently demonstrates an arising spread capacity. 5) All the strains were sensitive to quinolones, glycopeptides, cotrimoxazole, clindamycin, erythromycin, linezolid, rifampicin, mupirocin and the PVL-positive strain was resistant not only to beta-lactames, but to tetracycline and fucidic acid as well.


The percentage of S. aureus nasal carriage of doctors of our Hospital is higher compared with other hospitals of equal potency in Greece, but with low prevalence of staphylococcal infections. The isolated strains were multisusceptible. The isolation of a PVL-positive strain should arise alert in order to prevent the transmission of these strains, which may cause severe disease.

Session Details

Date: 01/08/2007
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: XXIst ISTH Congress
Location: Oxford, UK
Presentation type:
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