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Revista da Associação Médica Brasileira

versão impressa ISSN 0104-4230versão On-line ISSN 1806-9282


SARAIVA, I.H.; JONES, R.N.; ERWIN, M.  e  SADER, H.S.. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing of 87 clinical isolates of vancomycin-resistant enterococci. Rev. Assoc. Med. Bras. [online]. 1997, vol.43, n.3, pp.217-222. ISSN 0104-4230.

OBJECTIVES. 1) To evaluate the antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of vancomycin-resistant enterococci to the antimicrobial agents that are commonly used to treat enterococci infections and to some alternative drugs. 2) To evaluate the accuracy of E test for susceptibility testing enterococci. MATERIAL AND METHOD. We evaluated 87 clinical VRE isolates that were selected from a previous study which analyzed 1936 clinical isolates collected and processed in 97 US medical centers in the last quarter of 1992. The isolates were identified to the species level by using the API 20S System, the Vitek gram-positive identification cards and a modified version of the conventional method proposed by Facklam and Collins. The in vitro susceptibility testing was performed by broth microdilution, E test and disk diffusion methods, following the criteria described by the National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards (NCCLS). The VRE isolates were tested against antimicrobial agents commonly used to treat enterococci infections (vancomycin, teicoplanin, ampicillin, penicillin, gentamicin and streptomycin) and against ten potential alternative drugs (chloramphenicol, doxycycline, sparfloxacin, ciprofloxacin, clinafloxacin, erythromycin, spectinomycin, trospectomycin, trimetoprim-sulfametoxazol and novobiocin). RESULTS. Our results showed a high rate of resistance to ampicillin and penicillin (86%). High level resistance to gentamicin and streptomycin was demonstrated by 82% and 85% respectively. Although teicoplanin and vancomycin belong to the same antibiotic group (glycopeptide), 29% of VRE were susceptible to teicoplanin. Among the alternative drugs, trospectomycin, doxycyclin and chloramphenicol showed the highest in vitro activity, with 94%, 92% and 82% susceptibility respectively. In addition, erythromycin, trimetoprim-sulfametoxazol and ciprofloxacin showed the highest rates of resistance (98%, 83% and 69%, respectively). CONCLUSION. The treatment options for infections caused by vancomycin-resistant enterococci seem to be very narrow since a small percentage of those isolates were susceptible to the other antimicrobial agents commonly used to treat these infections and only a few of the alternative drugs tested showed good in vitro activity. Many regimens using various antibiotic combinations have been tested against VRE, most of them with fluoroquinolones. However further studies are necessary to evaluate the clinical role of these antibiotic combinations.

Palavras-chave : Vancomycin-resistant enterococci; In vitro antimicrobial activity; Antimicrobial resistance; New antimicrobial agents; E test.

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