Diarrheal disease and its complications remain a major cause of morbidity and mortality in children. The prevalence and antibiogram of E. coli
as causative agents of diarrhea vary from region to region, and even within countries
in the same geographical area.
To determine the serotype and antimicrobial susceptibility of E. coli
in children under-five years of age.
A cross-sectional study was conducted among 422 children with diarrhea from December 2011 to February 2012.
Identification of E. coli
and antimicrobial susceptibility testing were done following standard procedures.
The overall isolation rate of E. coli
was 48.3%. Poly 2 sero-groups, poly 3 sero-groups, poly 4 sero-groups and
O157:H7 accounted for 80 (39.2%), 40 (19.6%), 25 (12.3%), and 59 (28.9%) of the isolates, respectively. Poly 2 sero-
groups, constituting isolates belonging to enteropathogenic E. coli
were the most commonly isolated serotypes. E. coli
exhibited high levels of antimicrobial resistance to ampicillin (86.8%), tetracycline (76%) and cotrimoxazole (76%). Low
levels of resistance to ciprofloxacin (6.9%) and norfloxacin (9.3%) were documented.
High prevalence of diarrheagenic E. coli
compounded by alarming antimicrobial resistances is a serious public
health problem. Regular determination of antibiogram and public education are recommended.