Bacteriological study of diabetic foot infections


Khairul Azmi ABD KADIR 1, Muppidi SATYAVANI 2, Ketan PANDE 1

1  Department of Orthopaedics and 2 Department of Microbiology, RIPAS Hospital, Brunei Darussalam



Introduction: Foot infections are one of the major complications of diabetes mellitus and a significant risk factor for lower extremity amputation. Providing effective antimicrobial therapy is an important component in treating these infections. This study assesses the microbial isolates of patients with diabetic foot infections and their antibiotic susceptibility pattern. Materials and Methods: A retrospective study of 75 patients with diabetic foot infections admitted to RIPAS hospital between June 2008 and June 2010 was undertaken. Bacteriological specimens were obtained and processed using standard hospital procedure for microbiological culture and sensitivity testing. Results: Overall, 40 (54%) patients had subcutaneous infections, 22 (29%) had infected superficial ulcers, seven (9%) had infected deep ulcers involving muscle tissues and six (8%) had osteomyelitis. A total of 98 pathogens were isolated. Forty percent of the patients had polymicrobial infection, 39 (52%) had single organism and 6(8%) had no growth. Gram-negative bacteria (67%) were more commonly isolated than gram-positive bacteria (30%). The three most frequently found gram-negative organisms were Pseudomonas aeruginosa (19.4%), Klebsiella pneumoniae (15.3%), and Acinetobacter spp. (10.2%) and gram-positive organisms were Staphylococcus aureus (10.2%), Streptococcus pyogenes (7.1%) and Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus [MRSA] (7.1%). Vancomycin was found to be the most effective against gram-positive bacteria while amikacin was the most effective against gram-negative bacteria based on antibiotic testing. Conclusion: In 40% of diabetic feet infection was polymicrobial. Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were the most common gram-positive and gram-negative organisms respectively. This study helps us to choose the empirical antibiotics for cases of diabetic foot infections.


Keywords: Foot infection, diabetes mellitus, complications, microbiology, bacteriology


Correspondence author: Ketan PANDE, Department of Orthopaedics, RIPAS Hospital, Bandar Seri Begawan BA 1710, Brunei Darussalam.

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Brunei Int Med J. 2012; 8 (1): 19-26