Nasal carriage of highly resistant methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strains by hospital staff in Hazara region of Pakistan


  • Maria Rukan Department of Microbiology, The University of Haripur, Pakistan
  • Humaira Jamil Department of Microbiology, The University of Haripur, Pakistan
  • Habib Ali Bokhari Department of Biosciences, COMSATS Univrsity, Islamabad, Pakistan
  • Aamer Ali Khattak Department of Microbiology, The University of Haripur, Pakistan
  • Allah Nawaz Khan Department of Pathology, Gomal Medical College, Dera Ismail Khan, Islamabad, Pakistan
  • Zahid Ullah Department of Medical Lab Technology, The University of Haripur, Pakistan
  • Sarfaraz Hussain District Head Quarter Hospital, Haripur, Pakistan
  • Muhammad Ali Syed Department of Microbiology, The University of Haripur, Pakistan




Objective: To isolate and characterise multidrug resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus from healthcare workers who are at potential risk of nosocomial infections.

Methods: The observational, cross-sectional study was conducted from November 2014 to April 2015 at different hospitals of Haripur and Abbottabad, Pakistan, and comprised ward and operation theatre staff. The isolates were identified on the basis of microbiological and biochemical tests and further confirmed by polymerase chain reaction. Disc diffusion method was used for antibiotic sensitivity testing, and panton valentine leukocidin and methicillin resistance mecA genes were detected using polymerase chain reaction.

Results: Of 208 isolates, 108(52%) were from the ward staff and 100(48%) were from the operation theatre staff. Overall, 167(80.3%) isolates were positive for Staphylococcus aureus, and 75(36%) were methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. The number of antibiotic-resistant isolates was 75(45%) cefoxitin, 60(36%) ofloxacin, 152(91%) erythromycin, 52(31%) doxycycline, 127(76%) lincomycin, 53(32%) amoxicillin-clavulanate, 67(40%) ciprofloxacin, and 89(53%) ceftriaxone.

Conclusion: A high number of hospital staff, including those working in operation theatres, were found to be carrying methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and multidrug resistant strains in their nasal passage that may be a source of infection to patients.

Key Words: Methicillin resistance, Nosocomial infections, Vancomycin, MecA gene, Pvl gene. Continuous....

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