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Antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of Staphylococcus aureus, and their nasal and throat carriage among food handlers at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri Nigeria

Research Paper | August 1, 2017

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Emeakaroha, Maryjane Chioma, Nkwocha, Ihuoma Gertrude, Adieze, Nchekwube Chibuzo, Adieze, Ifechukwu E

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Int. J. Biomol. & Biomed.6( 3), 1-7, August 2017


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The frequency of Staphylococcus aureus carriage among healthy food handlers at the students’ cafeteria at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri Nigeria was investigated. Nasal and throat swab samples were obtained from 54 food handlers, and analysed using standard microbiological methods. A total of 28 (51.9%) food handlers were positive for S. aureus. Twenty one of the food handlers (38.9%) harbor S. aureus in their nostrils, 11 (20.4%) in their throat, while 6(11.1%) harbor it in both their nostrils and throats. The exclusive colonization of the throat (20.4%) of the studied food handlers, demonstrated the importance of the throat as a site of colonization for S. aureus. Antimicrobial susceptibility of isolates shows that all the isolated S. aureus were susceptible to nitrofurantoin and cefuroxime, but resistant to penicillin, chloramphenicol, cotrimazole. The isolates were also 25%, 28.6% and 35.7% susceptible to ampicillin, amoxycillin and erythromycin, respectively. This study has further shown the need for routine regular screening of food handlers for both nasal and throat carriage of S. aureus so as to detect early and treat carriers in order to protect the general public from staphylococcal food poisoning. The high prevalence of antimicrobial resistance in S. aureus isolated from the healthy food handlers is of great public health concern, as it shows a growing problem of antimicrobial resistance in the community. This study thus, recommends an urgent formulation of a national policy on antibiotics by the Nigerian government for regulation and management of antibiotics use.


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Antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of Staphylococcus aureus, and their nasal and throat carriage among food handlers at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri Nigeria

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