Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a very common uro-pathogen and pathogen of bloodstream infections (BSI) in Jamaica. The aim of this study was to examine this organism’s prevalence, determine co-infection rates and assess antibiotic resistance patterns.
In the absence of automated systems, data on all E. coli isolates identified at the University Hospital of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica during the first six months of 2008 and 2012 was collected and sorted. Data were analyzed using IBM SPSS Statistics version 20 for Windows.
A total of 1188 isolates (1072 from urine and 116 from blood) was analyzed. Patients with E. coli BSI were older than those with E. coli urinary tract infections (UTI) (55.3 years vs 42.4 years, p < 0.05) and both had a female predominance. Sensitivity profiles in 2012 for E. coli in blood and urine were highest for the carbapenems, Amikacin and Nitrofurantoin and lowest for the fluoroquinolones and Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Based on antimicrobial susceptibility patterns, Nitrofurantoin was identified as an appropriate choice for empiric therapy for UTI. Ten antibiotics were noted in this study to have developed statistically significant antibiotic resistance. Patients with E. coli BSI had a co-infection E. coli UTI rate of 39%.
Resistance patterns change drastically in a few years making frequent antimicrobial susceptibility profiling necessary. Further studies would be beneficial in guiding management of these patients.

Copyright (c) 2020 Donna Cheung, Tiffany Butterfield, Marsha DaCosta, Alison Nicholson.