Continued antimicrobial resistance surveillance can provide valuable information for the empirical selection of antimicrobial agents for patient treatment, and for resistance control. In this 6th annual study for 2002, the susceptibility data at 39 Korean Nationwide Surveillance of Antimicrobial Resistance (KONSAR) hospitals were analyzed. Resistance rates of S. aureus were 67% to oxacillin, and 58% to clindamycin. The ampicillin and vancomycin resistance rates of E. faecium were 89% and 16%, respectively. To penicillin, 71% of S. pneumoniae were nonsusceptible. Resistance rates of E. coli were 11% to cefotaxime, 8% to cefoxitin, and 34% to fluoroquinolone, and those of K. pneumoniae were 22% to ceftazidime, and 16% to cefoxitin. Lowest resistance rates to cephalosporins shown by E. cloacae and S. marcescens were to cefepime, 7% and 17%, respectively. This is the first KONSAR surveillance, which detected imipenem-resistant E. coli and K. pneumoniae. To imipenem, 22% of P. aeruginosa and 9% of Acinetobacter spp. were resistant. Trends of resistances showed a slight reduction in MRSA and in penicillin-nonsusceptible S. pneumoniae, but an increase in ampicillin-resistant E. faecium. Ampicillin-resistant E. coli and H. influenzae remained prevalent. Compared to the previous study, amikacin- and fluoroquinolone- resistant Acinetobacter spp. increased to 60% and 62%, respectively. Ceftazidime-resistant K. pneumoniae decreased slightly, and imipenem-resistant P. aeruginosa and Acinetobacter spp., and vancomycin-resistant E. faecium increased. In conclusion, vancomycin-resistant E. faecium, cefoxitin-resistant E. coli and K. pneumoniae, and imipenem-resistant P. aeruginosa and Acinetobacter spp. increased gradually, and imipenem-resistant E. coli and K. pneumoniae appeared for the first time. Continued surveillance is required to prevent further spread of these serious resistances.
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