Prevalence of antimicrobial resistant Escherichia coli from patients with suspected urinary tract infection in primary care, Denmark

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Background: Escherichia coli is the most common pathogen causing Urinary Tract Infections (UTI). Data from the current National Surveillance program in Denmark (DANMAP) may not accurately represent the prevalence of resistant E. coli in primary care, because only urine samples from complicated cases may be forwarded to the microbiological departments at hospitals for diagnostic examination. The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of resistant E. coli to the most commonly used antimicrobial agents in primary care in a consecutive sample of patients from general practice.

Methods: Observational study carried out from December 2014 to December 2015. Thirty-nine general practices from The Capital Region of Denmark included adult patients with urinary tract symptoms and suspected UTI. All urine samples were sent to the central laboratory Statens Serum Institut (SSI). Significant bacteriuria was interpreted according to the European Urinalysis Standards. Susceptibility testing was performed and interpreted according to the European Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (EUCAST) standards.

Results: From the 39 general practices 505 patients were recruited. Completed data were obtained from 485 (96%) patients. According to the European Urinalysis Standards, 261 (54%) patients had positive bacteriuria. The most common uropathogen in patients with uncomplicated (uUTI) and complicated (cUTI) urinary tract infection was E. coli 105 (69%) and 76 (70%), respectively. Eighty-two (45%) of 181 E. coli isolates were resistant to at least one of the tested antibiotics and 50 out of 82 isolates were resistant to two or more antimicrobial agents. The highest resistance-rate was found against ampicillin 34% (95% CI 24;42) in uUTI and 36% (24;46) in cUTI. There were no differences in the distribution of resistance between uncomplicated and complicated cases. The prevalence of resistance was similar to the one reported in DANMAP 2014.

Conclusion: In E. coli from uUTI there is high resistance rates to antimicrobial agents commonly used in primary care. There was no difference in the distribution of resistant E. coli in suspected uUTI vs cUTI. In Denmark, data from the National Surveillance program DANMAP can guide the decision for choice of antibiotic in patients with suspected UTI seeking care in primary care.

Trial registration: NCT02249273.
Original languageEnglish
Article number670
JournalB M C Infectious Diseases
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2017

    Research areas

  • E. coli, Antibiotic resistance, Urinary tract infections

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