Chronic suppurative otitis media (CSOM) is still a significant health
problem in developing countries. Therefore, it was pertinent to determine
the local Malawian microbiology in order to guide adequate treatment,
avoid complications, and provide records for future reference.
The study sought to determine the CSOM-causing microorganisms at
Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi, and establish their
relationship signs and symptoms, and with the demographic pattern of
This was a hospital-based cross-sectional descriptive study carried out at
the ENT outpatient clinic and the Microbiology Department of Queen
Elizabeth Central Hospital.The sample comprised 104 patients with
unilateral or bilateral active CSOM, who met the inclusion criteria. All
patients were evaluated through a detailed history and clinical examination.
Pus samples from draining ears were collected by aspiration with a sterile
pipette. The specimens were immediately sent for microbiological analysis.
Data were analyzed using SPSS.version 20.
The study found that
were the most prevalent aerobic bacteria, while
spp. were the commonest anaerobic
bacteria causing CSOM. These CSOM-causing microorganisms were
predominant among males aged 18 years and below. Some CSOMcausing
microorganisms were—significantly more so than the others—
characteristically associated with each of the following clinical features:
quantity of pus drainage, mode of onset, otalgia, hearing loss, location of
tympanic membrane perforation, and mucosal appearance.