Search tips
Search criteria

Results 1-25 (35)

Clipboard (0)

Select a Filter Below

Year of Publication
1.  Sero-conversion rate of Syphilis and HIV among pregnant women attending antenatal clinic in Tanzania: a need for re-screening at delivery 
Despite the available cost effective antenatal testing and treatment, syphilis and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are still among common infections affecting pregnant women especially in developing countries. In Tanzania, pregnant women are tested only once for syphilis and HIV during antenatal clinic (ANC) visits. Therefore, there are missed opportunities for syphilis and HIV screening among those who were not tested during ANC visits and those acquiring infections during the course of pregnancy. This study was designed to determine the syphilis and HIV seroprevalence at delivery and seroconversion rate among pregnant women delivering at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC).
A cross sectional, hospital-based study involving pregnant women attending Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) antenatal clinic was done from January to March 2012. Serum samples were collected and tested for HIV and syphilis using HIV and syphilis rapid tests. Demographic and clinical data were collected using a standardized data collection tool and analysed using STATA version 11.
A total of 331 and 408 women were screened for syphilis and HIV during antenatal respectively. Of 331 women who screened negative for syphilis at ANC, nine (2.7%) were seropositive at delivery while of 391who tested negative for HIV during ANC eight (2%) were found to be positive at delivery. Six (1.8%) and 23 (9%) of women who did not screen for syphilis and HIV at ANC were seropositive for syphilis and HIV at delivery respectively. There was significant difference of seroprevalence for HIV, among women who tested negative at ANC and those who did not test at ANC (2% vs.9%, P,<0.001). The overall prevalence of syphilis and HIV at delivery was 15 (2.3%) and 48 (7.2%) respectively. Syphilis seropositivity at delivery was significantly associated with HIV co-infection (p < 0.001), male partner circumcision (p = 0.011) and alcohol use among women (p < 0.001).
The current protocol of screening for syphilis and HIV only once during pregnancy as practiced in Tanzania may miss women who get re-infected and seroconvert during pregnancy. Re-screening for syphilis and HIV during the course of pregnancy and at delivery is recommended in Tanzania as it can help to identify such women and institute appropriate treatment.
PMCID: PMC4307991  PMID: 25613487
Syphilis; Treponema pallidum; Human immunodeficiency virus; Seroprevalence; Seroconversion; Sexually transmitted infection
2.  Epidemiology and genetic diversity of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis in East Africa 
Tuberculosis (Edinburgh, Scotland)  2013;94(1):10.1016/
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is an emerging problem in many parts of the world, and levels of MDR-TB among new TB patients are increasing in sub-Saharan Africa. We reviewed the prevalence and molecular epidemiology of MDR-TB in East Africa, including Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda. In 16 epidemiologic surveys, the prevalence of MDR among new cases ranges from 0.4% in Tanzania to 4.4% in Uganda, and among recurrent cases ranges from 3.9% in Tanzania to 17.7% in Uganda. There is a gap of 5,948 cases between the estimated number of MDR-TB cases in East Africa and the number actually diagnosed. The only confirmed risk factors for MDR-TB are prior treatment for TB and refugee status. HIV has not been reported as a risk factor, and there are no reports of statistical association between spoligotype and drug resistance pattern. Increased capacity for diagnosis and treatment of MDR-TB is needed, with an emphasis on recurrent TB cases and refugees.
PMCID: PMC3877177  PMID: 24215798
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB); prevalence; genetic diversity; risk factors; East Africa
3.  Utility of qualitative C- reactive protein assay and white blood cells counts in the diagnosis of neonatal septicaemia at Bugando Medical Centre, Tanzania 
BMC Pediatrics  2014;14(1):248.
Neonatal septicaemia diagnosis based on clinical features alone is non-specific leading to the initiation of unnecessary antibiotic treatment posing a danger of increased antibiotic resistance. In the present study the utility of serial qualitative C-reactive protein (CRP) assay and white blood cells count (WBC) in the diagnosis of neonatal septicaemia was investigated using blood culture as gold standard.
A total of 305 neonates admitted at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) neonatal units between September 2013 and April 2014 were enrolled. Demographic and clinical data were collected using standardized data collection tool. Blood specimens were collected for blood culture, WBC count and qualitative CRP assay.
Of 305 neonates; 224 (73.4%) were ≤ 72 hrs of age and 91(29.8%) had low birth weight. The positive CRP assay was observed in 67 (22.0%), 80 (26.2%) and 88 (28.9%) of neonates on day 1, 2 and 3 respectively; with any CRP positive occurred in 104 (34.1%) of neonates. The sensitivities of CRP assay in the diagnosis of septicaemia using culture as gold standard on day 1, 2, 3 and any positive were 40.4%, 53.2%, 54.8% and 62.9% respectively. While specificities were 82.7%, 80.7%, 77.8% and 73.3% respectively. Higher sensitivity of 75% was observed when CRP was used to diagnose gram negative septicaemia compared to 50% that was observed in the diagnosis of gram positive septicaemia. WBC count of ≥13 × 109 /L had sensitivity and specificity of 64.5% and 66.7% respectively with area under the curve of 0.694. When the any positive CRP and WBC of ≥13 × 109 /L were used the sensitivity increased to 90.3% with specificity of 50%. Neonates with septicaemia due to gram negative bacteria were significantly found to have higher rates of positive CRP than neonates with gram positive septicaemia and with negative culture (p < 0.001, OR 8.2, 95 CI; 2.9-26).
In place where blood culture is limited neonates having clinical features of neonatal sepsis with positive qualitative CRP assay and increased WBC should urgently be initiated on appropriate sepsis management in order to reduce morbidity and mortality associated with neonatal sepsis.
PMCID: PMC4192733  PMID: 25280754
C-reactive protein; Neonatal sepsis; WBC
4.  Incidence and predictors of surgical site infections following caesarean sections at Bugando Medical Centre, Mwanza, Tanzania 
Surgical site infection (SSI) is the second most common infectious complication after urinary tract infection following a delivery by caesarean section (CS). At Bugando Medical Centre there has no study documenting the epidemiology of SSI after CS despite the large number of CSs performed and the relatively common occurrence of SSIs.
This was a prospective cohort study involving pregnant women who underwent a CS between October 2011 and February 2012 at Bugando Medical Centre. A total of 345 pregnant women were enrolled. Preoperative, intraoperative and postoperative data were collected using a standardized questionnaire. Wound specimens were collected and processed as per standard operative procedures; and susceptibility testing was carried out using a disc diffusion technique. Data was analyzed using STATA version 11.
The overall cumulative incidence of SSI was 10.9% with an incidence rate of 37.5 per 10,000 people/day (95% CI, 26.8-52.4). The median time from CS to the development of SSI was 7 days (interquartile range [IQR] = 6–9 days). Six independent risk factors for post caesarean SSI as identified in this study by multivariate analysis are: hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HR: 2.5; 95% CI, 1.1-5.6; P = 0.021), severe anaemia (HR: 3.8; 95% CI, 1.2-12.4, P = 0.028), surgical wound class III (HR: 2.4; 95% CI, 1.1-5.0; P = 0.021), multiple vaginal examinations (HR: 2.5; 95% CI, 1.2-5.1; P = 0.011), prolonged duration of operation (HR: 2.6; 95% CI, 1.2-5.5; P = 0.015) and an operation performed by an intern or junior doctor (HR: 4.0; 95% CI, 1.7-9.2; P = 0.001). Staphylococcus aureus was the most common organism (27.3%), followed by Klebsiella pneumoniae (22.7%). Patients with a SSI had a longer average hospital stay than those without a SSI (12.7 ± 6.9 vs. 4 ± 1.7; P < 0.0001) and the case fatality rate among patients with a SSI was 2.9%.
SSIs are common among women undergoing CSs at Bugando Medical Centre. SSIs were commonly associated with multiple factors. Strategies to control these factors are urgently needed to control SSIs post CS at Bugando Medical Centre and other centres in developing countries.
PMCID: PMC4131772  PMID: 25126415
5.  Predominance of multi-drug resistant bacterial pathogens causing surgical site infections in Muhimbili national hospital, Tanzania 
BMC Research Notes  2014;7:500.
Surgical site infections (SSIs) remain a common and widespread problem contributing to a significant morbidity and mortality, attributed partly by the increase in antimicrobial resistance among the etiological agents. This study was done to determine the spectrum of bacterial isolates and their susceptibility patterns causing SSIs at Muhimbili National Hospital, Tanzania.
This descriptive cross sectional study was conducted between September, 2011 and February, 2012. Pus swabs or pus were cultured on blood agar (Oxoid, UK) and MacConkey agar (Oxoid, UK) and incubated aerobically at 37°C for 18–24 hours. Bacterial identification was done using API 20E and VITEK and antimicrobial susceptibility was determined by Kirby Bauer disc diffusion.
Of the 100 patients, from whom wound swabs were collected, 90 (90%) had positive aerobic bacterial growth. A total of 147 pathogenic bacteria were isolated, including 114 (77.5%) gram negative and 33(22.5%) gram positive organisms. The most prevalent bacterial species were Pseudomonas aeruginosa (16.3%), followed by Staphylococcus aureus (12.2%) and Klebsiella pneumoniae (10.8%). Of the 18 S. aureus , 8 (44%) were methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and three of them (17%) were carrying both MRSA and induced clindamycin resistance (ICR). Extended spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) producing Enterobacteriaceae were observed in 23 (79.3%) of the 29 isolates tested. Majority of Escherichia coli 12 (92.3%) and K. pneumoniae 11 (69%) isolates were ESBL producers. About 63% (93/147) were multiple-drug resistance (MDR) isolates, and the overall MDR among Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria was 60.6% (20/33) and 61.4%, (73/114), respectively. The prevalence of MDR for E. coli, A. baumannii and P. stuartii was 100% each. Majority (97%) of the Gram negative bacteria were resistant to more than four categories (classes) of antibiotics.
A high proportion (63%) of the isolates causing SSIs in this tertiary hospital were MDR, of which (90%) were resistant to more than four classes of antibiotics. In the light of these findings, an urgent and significant change in antibiotic prescription policy is required at this National hospital.
PMCID: PMC4126906  PMID: 25100042
Multidrug resistance; Surgical site infections; Tanzania
6.  Hepatocellular carcinoma: clinicopathological profile and challenges of management in a resource-limited setting 
Hepatocellular carcinoma is one of the most common cancers worldwide and its incidence is reported to be increasing in resource-limited countries. There is a paucity of published data regarding hepatocellular carcinoma in Tanzania, and the study area in particular. This study describes the clinicopathological profile of hepatocellular carcinoma in our local setting and highlights the challenging problems in the management of this disease.
This was a retrospective study of histopathologically confirmed cases of hepatocellular carcinoma seen at Bugando Medical Center between March 2009 and February 2013.
A total of 142 patients (M: F = 2.2: 1) were studied representing 4.6% of all malignancies. The median age of patients was 45 years. Hepatitis B virus infection (66.2%) and heavy alcohol consumption (60.6%) were the most frequently identified risk factors for hepatocellular carcinoma. The majority of patients (88.0%) presented late with advanced stages. HBsAg was positive in 66.2% of the patients and Hepatitis C Virus antibody in 16.9%. Thirteen (9.2%) patients tested positive for HIV infection. Most patients (52.8%) had both right and left lobe involvement. The trabecular pattern (47.9%) was the most frequent histopathological type. None of patients had curative therapy because of the advanced nature of the disease. Coagulopathy (45.7%) was the most common complications. The overall mortality rate was 46.5% and it was significantly associated with comorbidity, HIV positivity, CD4+ count <200 cells/μl, high histological grade, advanced stage of the tumor, presence of distant metastases at the time of diagnosis, and associated complications (P < 0.001). The overall median duration of hospital stay was 14 days. The majority of patients (71.1%) were lost to follow-up at the end of the follow-up period.
Hepatocellular carcinoma patients in this region are relatively young at diagnosis and the majority of them present late with an advanced stage and high rate of distant metastasis. Lack of awareness of the disease, poor accessibility to healthcare facilities, and lack of screening programs in this region may contribute to advanced disease at the time of diagnosis. There is a need for early detection, adequate treatment, and proper follow-up to improve treatment outcome.
PMCID: PMC4121298  PMID: 25085449
Hepatocellular carcinoma; Clinicopathological; Challenges; Resource-limited setting; Tanzania
7.  Prevalence and determinants of Campylobacter infection among under five children with acute watery diarrhea in Mwanza, North Tanzania 
Archives of Public Health  2014;72(1):17.
Campylobacteriosis, a zoonotic bacterial disease observed world-wide, is becoming the most commonly recognized cause of bacterial gastroenteritis in humans. This study was done to determine the prevalence and determinants of Campylobacter infection among under-fives with acute watery diarrhea in Mwanza City, Tanzania.
This cross-sectional hospital-based study was conducted at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) and Sekou Toure Hospital in Mwanza City. All inpatients and outpatients under-fives who met the inclusion criteria from October 2012 to April 2013 were enrolled in the study. Demographic and clinical data were obtained using standardized data collection tools. Stool samples were collected for gram staining and culture for Campylobacter spp. on Preston selective agar media. In addition, blood slides for malaria and HIV tests were done to all patients.
A total of 300 children were enrolled with a median age of 12 [interquartile range, 8–19] months. Of these, 169 (56.5%) were from BMC and 131 (43.7%) from Sekou-Toure hospital. One hundred and seventy (56.7%) of the participating children were male. Of 300 under-fives with acute watery diarrhea, 29 patients (9.7%) were found to have Campylobacter infection. A significant higher number of children with Campylobacter infection were found in Sekou Toure hospital compared to BMC [16.0% (21/29) versus 4.7% (8/29), p = 0.002)]. Age above 2 years was independently found to predict campylobacter infection (OR: 2.9, 95% CI 1.1-7.7, p = 0.0037). Of 30 patients with a positive blood slide for Plasmodium falciparum, 20.0% were also positive for Campylobacter infection (OR: 3.9, 95% CI 1.2-10.1, p = 0.021).
Campylobacter infection shows a comparatively low prevalence in under-fives with acute watery diarrhea in Mwanza city and is independently associated with positive slides for malaria and an age above 2 years. Further studies are needed to type the most prevalent Campylobacter species and to determine their antibiotic susceptibility pattern.
PMCID: PMC4057571  PMID: 24932408
Acute watery diarrhea; Campylobacteriosis; Under five children
8.  Evaluation of existence and transmission of extended spectrum beta lactamase producing bacteria from post-delivery women to neonates at Bugando Medical Center, Mwanza-Tanzania 
BMC Research Notes  2014;7:279.
Extended spectrum beta-lactamase producing bacteria (ESBL) are common causes of neonatal sepsis worldwide. Neonatal sepsis due to ESBL is associated with increased morbidity and mortality at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC). Due to limited information on the sources of these ESBL strains at BMC, this study was conducted to evaluate the existence, magnitude and transmission of ESBL from post-delivery women to neonates at BMC, Mwanza-Tanzania.
A cross-sectional study was conducted at obstetrics and neonatal wards from May to July 2013, involving post-delivery women and their neonates. Rectal swabs were collected and processed to identify the ESBL strains and their antimicrobial susceptibility patterns. Patients’ data were obtained using a standardized data collection tool. We enrolled 113 women and 126 neonates with mean age of 26.5 ± 5.5 years and median gestation age [IQR] of 39 [35–40] weeks respectively. The prevalence of ESBL carriage among women and neonates were 15% (17/113) and 25.4% (32/126) respectively. The acquisition of ESBL isolates among neonates on day 1, day 3 and day 7 were 60.0% (21/35), 25.7% (9/35) and 14.3% (5/35) respectively. There was no phenotypic similarity between ESBL strains from women and their respective neonates, suggesting other sources of transmission. Neonates given antibiotics were more likely to carry ESBL than those not given [100% (32/32) versus 86% (81/94), p = 0.018].
The carriage rate of ESBL strains among post-delivery women and neonates at BMC is high. Our findings suggest that neonates acquire these strains from sources other than post-delivery women and more than half acquire them on the first day of life. More studies are recommended to further explore the sources of ESBL strains among neonates.
PMCID: PMC4014626  PMID: 24886506
ESBL; Post-delivery women; Neonates; Tanzania
9.  Predominance of multi-resistant gram-negative bacteria colonizing chronic lower limb ulcers (CLLUs) at Bugando Medical Center 
BMC Research Notes  2014;7:211.
Infections, trauma, malignances and poorly controlled diabetes are common causes of chronic lower limb ulcerations in developing countries. Infected wound with multi-drug resistant bacteria usually are associated with increased morbidity and mortality. We report the distribution of bacteria pathogens colonizing the chronic lower limb ulcers and their drug susceptibility pattern from Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) a tertiary hospital in Tanzania.
Three hundred non-repetitive wound swabs were aseptically collected from 300 patients with chronic lower limb ulcers using sterile swabs and processed following standard operative procedures. Isolates were identified using in house biochemical testing and in case of ambiguous confirmation was done using API 20NE and API 20E. Susceptibility was determined using disc diffusion test following clinical laboratory standard Institute guidelines (CLSI). Of 300 swabs from patients with chronic lower limbs ulcers, 201 (67.7%) had positive aerobic culture within 48 hours of incubation. Of 201 isolates, 180(89.6%) were gram-negative bacteria. Out of 180 gram negative bacteria, resistance was detected for ampicillin (95%, n = 171), amoxicillin/clavulanate (83.9%, n = 151), trimethoprim-sulphamethoxazole (78.9%, n = 142), ceftriaxone (46.7%, n = 84), ceftazidime (45.6%, n = 82), gentamicin (39.4%, n = 71), ciprofloxacin (17.8%, n = 32) and meropenem 28(15.6%, n = 25). A total of 41 (35%) of enterobacteriaceae were found to be extended spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBL) producers while of 18 Staphylococcus aureus, 8(44.4%) were found to be methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
There is high prevalence of ESBL and MRSA isolates in surgical wards at BMC. We recommend infection control and antibiotic stewardship programs in these wards to minimize spread of multi-resistant organisms.
PMCID: PMC3986440  PMID: 24708843
Chronic lower limb ulcers; Multi-drug resistant; Gram negative enteric
11.  Sero-positivity rate of rubella and associated factors among pregnant women attending antenatal care in Mwanza, Tanzania 
Sero-positivity rates of the rubella virus among pregnant women vary widely throughout the world. In Tanzania, rubella vaccination is not included in the national immunization schedule and there is therefore no antenatal screening for this viral disease. So far, there are no reports on the sero-prevalence of rubella among pregnant women in Tanzania. As a result, this study was undertaken to establish the sero-positivity rate of rubella and rubella risk factors among pregnant women attending antenatal care clinics in Mwanza, Tanzania.
From November 2012 to May 2013 a total of 350 pregnant women were enrolled and their serum samples collected and analyzed using the AXSYM anti-rubella virus IgG/IgM-MEIA test. Demographic and clinical data were collected using a standardized data collection tool. Data analysis was done using STATA version 12.
Of 342 pregnant women tested for rubella antibodies, 317 (92.6%) were positive for anti-rubella IgG while only 1 (0.3%) was positive for IgM. Higher sero-positivity rates were found in the age group of 25–44 years. Furthermore, it was observed that with each year increase in age, the risk of contracting rubella increases by 12% (OR = 1.12, 95% CI: 1.02-1.22, P = 0.019). Women involved in farming and business women were at a higher risk of contracting rubella infection compared to formally employed women (OR: 4.9, P = 0.011; OR 7.1, p = 0.003 respectively). In univariate analysis, the risk of contracting rubella virus infection was found to increase with gestational age with a statistical significance.
Sero-positivity rates of rubella are high in Mwanza and are significantly associated with an increase in age and being a farmer or a business woman. Screening of rubella and immunization of women at risk are highly recommended in this area with a high non-immune rate against rubella virus.
PMCID: PMC3975942  PMID: 24589180
Prevalence; Rubella; Pregnancy; Mwanza; Tanzania
12.  Carbapenemase Genes among Multidrug Resistant Gram Negative Clinical Isolates from a Tertiary Hospital in Mwanza, Tanzania 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:303104.
The burden of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is rapidly growing across antibiotic classes, with increased detection of isolates resistant to carbapenems. Data on the prevalence of carbapenem resistance in developing countries is limited; therefore, in this study, we determined the prevalence of carbapenemase genes among multidrug resistant gram negative bacteria (MDR-GNB) isolated from clinical specimens in a tertiary hospital in Mwanza, Tanzania. A total of 227 MDR-GNB isolates were analyzed for carbapenem resistance genes. For each isolate, five different PCR assays were performed, allowing for the detection of the major carbapenemase genes, including those encoding the VIM-, IMP-, and NDM-type metallo-beta-lactamases, the class A KPC-type carbapenemases, and the class D OXA-48 enzyme. Of 227 isolates, 80 (35%) were positive for one or more carbapenemase gene. IMP-types were the most predominant gene followed by VIM, in 49 (21.59%) and 28 (12%) isolates, respectively. Carbapenemase genes were most detected in K. pneumoniae 24 (11%), followed by P. aeruginosa 23 (10%), and E. coli with 19 isolates (8%). We have demonstrated for the first time a high prevalence of MDR-GNB clinical isolates having carbapenem resistance genes in Tanzania. We recommend routine testing for carbapenem resistance among the MDR-GNB particularly in systemic infections.
PMCID: PMC3953670  PMID: 24707481
13.  Antimicrobial resistance in human and animal pathogens in Zambia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Mozambique and Tanzania: an urgent need of a sustainable surveillance system 
A review of the published and unpublished literature on bacterial resistance in human and animals was performed. Sixty-eight articles/reports from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Mozambique, Tanzania and Zambia were reviewed. The majority of these articles were from Tanzania. There is an increasing trend in the incidence of antibiotic resistance; of major concern is the increase in multidrug- resistant Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus, Vibrio cholera, non-typhoid Salmonella and other pathogens responsible for nosocomial infections. The increase in methicillin- resistant Staphylococcus aureus and extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) producers in the countries under review confirms the spread of these clones worldwide. Clinical microbiology services in these countries need to be strengthened in order to allow a coordinated surveillance for antimicrobial resistance and provide data for local treatment guidelines and for national policies to control antimicrobial resistance. While the present study does not provide conclusive evidence to associate the increasing trend in antibiotic resistance in humans with the use of antibiotics in animals, either as feed additives or veterinary prescription, we strongly recommend a one-health approach of systematic surveillance across the public and animal health sectors, as well as the adherence to the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization)-OIE (World Organization of animal Health) –WHO(World Health Organization) recommendations for non-human antimicrobial usage.
PMCID: PMC3852305  PMID: 24119299
14.  Predominance of Klebsiella pneumoniae ST14 carrying CTX-M-15 causing neonatal sepsis in Tanzania 
BMC Infectious Diseases  2013;13:466.
Klebsiella pneumoniae strains expressing ESBLs are a predominant cause of hospital acquired infections. Here we describe the molecular epidemiology of these isolates in a tertiary hospital in Tanzania, as potential pathogens for neonatal infections.
Between April 2009 and March 2010 all Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates with phenotypic expression Extended Spectrum Beta Lactamase (ESBL) were collected and characterized. Identification was done using in house biochemical tests in case of ambiguous results confirmation was done using API 20E. Susceptibility testing was determined using the disc diffusion method followed by specific PCR and sequencing to determine ESBL genes. Phylogenetic analysis, Pulse field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and Multi-Locus sequence typing (MLST) to PFGE clusters representative isolates were performed to determine clones of the isolates. Conjugation and hybridization were performed to determine the location of blaCTX-M-15 gene.
A total of 92 non- repetitive ESBL producing K. pneumoniae representing 50.3% of Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates were characterized. These isolates were from blood 61 (66%), wound swab 13 (14%), urine 12 (13%) and pus 6 (7%) were analyzed. Most blood culture strains originated from neonatal unit 39/61(64%) and 22 (36%) of the blood culture isolates were from neonatal ICU. All isolates were resistant to gentamicin and 54% were resistant to ciprofloxacin. Using a similarity index of 80%, the isolates were assigned to thirteen clusters based on PFGE patterns and contained sub-clusters with identical strains indicating clonal outbreaks. Cluster X5, X7 and X8, and X9 were grouped into ST48, ST14 and ST348 respectively. Based on gyrA PCR- RFLP phylogenetic analysis all isolates were grouped as KpI. The predominant ESBL allele detected was blaCTX-M-15 which was found in 76% of isolates, followed by blaTEM-104 (19%), blaSHV-11 (3.2%) and blaTEM-176 (2%). The blaCTX-M-15 gene was located in multiple conjugative IncF plasmids ranging from 25 kb-485 kb in size.
The high prevalence of blaCTX-M-15 observed among ESBL producing K. pneumoniae in Tanzania, is possibly due to the spread of a common IncFII 145 kb plasmid and of certain clones such as ST14 and ST48. Furthermore the 485 kb plasmid detected is the largest plasmid reported to carry blaCTX-M-15 todate.
PMCID: PMC3851032  PMID: 24099282
15.  Plasma Concentrations of Efavirenz and Nevirapine among HIV-Infected Patients with Immunological Failure Attending a Tertiary Hospital in North-Western Tanzania 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(9):e75118.
Sub-therapeutic and supra-therapeutic plasma concentrations of antriretrovirals are the significant causes of treatment failure and toxicity respectively among HIV-infected patients. We conducted this study to determine the pattern of efavirenz and nevirapine plasma drug concentrations among adult HIV-infected patients with immunological failure attending at a tertiary hospital in North-western Tanzania.
Materials and Methods
A cross-sectional study was conducted among adult HIV-infected patients with immunological failure who have been on either efavirenz or nevirapine based antiretroviral regimen for more than 6 months. Patients were serially enrolled through routine Care and Treatment Clinic (CTC) activities. Plasma drug concentrations for efavirenz and nevirapine were determined by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and Gas Chromatography (GC) respectively. Demographic, clinical and laboratory data such as viral load and CD4 counts were collected. Data analysis was done using STATA 12.
Of the 152 patients with immunological failure enrolled, the sub-therapeutic, therapeutic and supra-therapeutic plasma antiretroviral drug concentrations were found in 43/152 (28.3%), 76/152 (50.0%) and 33/152 (21.7%) respectively. Half of the patients were outside therapeutic window with either sub-therapeutic or supra-therapeutic plasma ARV drug concentrations. There was a significant difference in distribution of ARV adherence (p-value<0.001), NRTI backbone (p-value = 0.039), HIV stage (p-value = 0.026) and viral load (p-value = 0.007) within sub-therapeutic, therapeutic and supra-therapeutic ARV plasma drug concentrations.
There is a wide inter-individual variability of plasma ARV concentrations among HIV patients with immunological failure, with a large proportion of patients being outside therapeutic window. This variability is significant based on ARV adherence, NRTI backbone, viral load and HIV stage. Routine therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) could assist identifying these patients early and making timely correction to avoid virological failure, poor immunological outcome and prevent associated drug toxicities. Nonetheless, ARV adherence should be strictly emphasized on HIV patients with immunological failure.
PMCID: PMC3769243  PMID: 24058655
16.  Sero-prevalence and factors associated with Toxoplasma gondii infection among pregnant women attending antenatal care in Mwanza, Tanzania 
Parasites & Vectors  2013;6:222.
Serological screening of pregnant women for Toxoplasma gondii-specific antibodies is not practiced as an antenatal care in Tanzania; and there is a limited data about sero-prevalence of T. gondii infection in developing countries. We therefore conducted this study to determine the sero-prevalence and factors associated with T. gondii infection among pregnant women attending antenatal care clinics in Mwanza, Tanzania.
Between 1st November 2012 and 31st May 2013 a total of 350 pregnant women attending antenatal care clinics in Mwanza were enrolled and screened for IgG and IgM antibodies against T. gondii using the ELISA technique.
Of 350 pregnant women, 108 (30.9%) were sero-positive for T. gondii-specific antibodies. The risk of contracting T. gondii infection increases by 7% with each yearly increase in a woman’s age (OR=1.07, 95% CI: 1.02 - 1.11, p=0.002). The sero-positivity rate of T. gondii-specific antibodies was higher among pregnant women from the urban than those from rural communities (41.5% versus 22.0%); [OR=2.2, 95% CI; 1.4 - 3.7, p=0.001]. Likewise employed/business women were more likely to get T. gondii infection than peasants (40.0% versus 25.9%) [OR=1.9, 95% CI: 1.2 - 3.0, p=0.006].
Sero-prevalence of T. gondii-specific antibodies is high among pregnant women in Mwanza with a significant proportion of women at risk of contracting primary T. gondii infections. Screening of T. gondii infections during antenatal care should be considered in Tanzania as the main strategy to minimize congenital toxoplasmosis.
PMCID: PMC3750225  PMID: 23915834
17.  Molecular Characterization of Staphylococcus aureus from Patients with Surgical Site Infections at Mulago Hospital in Kampala, Uganda 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):e66153.
The prevalence of Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is progressively increasing globally with significant regional variation. Understanding the Staphylococcus aureus lineages is crucial in controlling nosocomial infections. Recent studies on S. aureus in Uganda have revealed an escalating burden of MRSA. However, the S. aureus genotypes circulating among patients are not known. Here, we report S. aureus lineages circulating in patients with surgical site infections (SSI) at Mulago National hospital, Kampala, Uganda.
A cross-sectional study involving 314 patients with SSI at Mulago National Hospital was conducted from September 2011 to April 2012. Pus swabs from the patients’ SSI were processed using standard microbiological procedures. Methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) and MRSA were identified using phenotypic tests and confirmed by PCR-detection of the nuc and mecA genes, respectively. SCCmec genotypes were determined among MRSA isolates using multiplex PCR. Furthermore, to determine lineages, spa sequence based-genotyping was performed on all S. aureus isolates.
Of the 314 patients with SSI, S. aureus accounted for 20.4% (64/314), of which 37.5% (24/64) were MRSA. The predominant SCCmec types were type V (33.3%, 8/24) and type I (16.7%, 4/24). The predominant spa lineages were t645 (17.2%, 11/64) and t4353 (15.6%, 10/64), and these were found to be clonally circulating in all the surgical wards. On the other hand, lineages t064, t355, and t4609 were confined to the obstetrics and gynecology wards. A new spa type (t10277) was identified from MSSA isolate. On multivariate logistic regression analysis, cancer and inducible clindamycin resistance remained as independent predictors of MRSA-SSI.
SCCmec types I and V are the most prevalent MRSA mecA types from the patients’ SSI. The predominant spa lineages (t645 and t4353) are clonally circulating in all the surgical wards, calling for strengthening of infection control practices at Mulago National Hospital.
PMCID: PMC3688721  PMID: 23840416
18.  Clinicopathological profile and surgical treatment of abdominal tuberculosis: a single centre experience in northwestern Tanzania 
BMC Infectious Diseases  2013;13:270.
Abdominal tuberculosis continues to be a major public health problem worldwide and poses diagnostic and therapeutic challenges to general surgeons practicing in resource-limited countries. This study was conducted to describe the clinicopathological profile and outcome of surgical treatment of abdominal tuberculosis in our setting and compare with what is described in literature.
A prospective descriptive study of patients who presented with abdominal tuberculosis was conducted at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) in northwestern Tanzania from January 2006 to February 2012. Ethical approval to conduct the study was obtained from relevant authorities. Statistical data analysis was performed using SPSS version 17.0.
Out of 256 patients enrolled in the study, males outnumbered females. The median age was 28 years (range = 16–68 years). The majority of patients (77.3%) had primary abdominal tuberculosis. A total of 127 (49.6%) patients presented with intestinal obstruction, 106 (41.4%) with peritonitis, 17 (6.6%) with abdominal masses and 6 (2.3%) patients with multiple fistulae in ano. Forty-eight (18.8%) patients were HIV positive. A total of 212 (82.8%) patients underwent surgical treatment for abdominal tuberculosis. Bands /adhesions (58.5%) were the most common operative findings. Ileo-caecal region was the most common bowel involved in 122 (57.5%) patients. Release of adhesions and bands was the most frequent surgical procedure performed in 58.5% of cases. Complication and mortality rates were 29.7% and 18.8% respectively. The overall median length of hospital stay was 32 days and was significantly longer in patients with complications (p < 0.001). Advanced age (age ≥ 65 years), co-morbid illness, late presentation, HIV positivity and CD4+ count < 200 cells/μl were statistically significantly associated with mortality (p < 0.0001). The follow up of patients were generally poor as only 37.5% of patients were available for follow up at twelve months after discharge.
Abdominal tuberculosis constitutes a major public health problem in our environment and presents a diagnostic challenge requiring a high index of clinical suspicion. Early diagnosis, early anti-tuberculous therapy and surgical treatment of the associated complications are essential for survival.
PMCID: PMC3680203  PMID: 23758837
Abdominal tuberculosis; Clinicopathological profile; Outcome; Surgical treatment; Tanzania
19.  Single dose of gentamicin in combination with metronidazole versus multiple doses for prevention of post-caesarean infection at Bugando Medical Centre in Mwanza, Tanzania: a randomized, equivalence, controlled trial 
Caesarean section(C/S) has been found to increase rates of maternal infectious morbidities five times more than vaginal delivery. The provision of intravenous prophylactic antibiotics 30 to 60 minutes prior to C/S has been found to substantially reduce post-caesarean infection. At Bugando Medical Centre, there is no consistent protocol for the administration of antibiotic prophylaxis to patients who are undergoing emergency C/S. Providing repeated dosages of antibiotic prophylaxis after C/S is the common practice. This study aimed to determine the comparative efficacy of a single dose of gentamicin in combination with metronidazole versus multiple doses for prevention of post-caesarean infection.
From October 2011 to May 2012, a randomized, equivalence, non-blinding clinical trial was conducted at Bugando Medical Centre in Mwanza, Tanzania. A total of 500 eligible participants were enrolled in the study and were randomly allocated into two study arms -- “A” and “B”. Participants in “A” received a single dose of gentamicin in combination with metronidazole 30 to 60 minutes prior to the operation, and participants in “B” received the same drugs prior to the operation but continued with for 24 hours. Both groups had 30 days of follow-up and were assessed for signs and symptoms of surgical-site infection as the primary outcome. The equivalence margin was set at 5%. The two-tailed equivalence was analyzed based on intention- to-treat analysis.
The randomization was proper, as the distribution of various demographic and other baseline characteristics had a p-value of > 0.05. All 500 participants were included in our analysis; of these, no participants were lost to follow-up. Surgical-site infection occurred in 12 out of the 250 (4.8%) receiving single dose compared to 16 out of the 250 (6.4%) receiving multiple doses. There is an absolute proportion difference of 1.6% (95% Confidence interval: -2.4 – 5.6%) which lies outside the pre-specified 5% equivalence margin.
We recommend the administration of pre-operative single dose antibiotic prophylaxis for emergency caesarean as this intervention proved to be not equivalent to multiple doses antibiotic prophylaxis in reducing surgical site infection. Single dose therapy also reduces staff workload along with medication costs.
Trial registration
Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN44462542
PMCID: PMC3681664  PMID: 23721411
Post-caesarean infection; Metronidazole; Gentamicin; Mwanza; Tanzania
20.  Bacteremia and resistant gram-negative pathogens among under-fives in Tanzania 
Antibiotic resistance is one of the most serious public health concerns worldwide and is increasing at an alarming rate, making daily treatment decisions more challenging. This study is aimed at identifying local bacterial isolates and their antimicrobial susceptibility patterns to avoid irrational antibiotic use, especially in settings where unguided management occurs and febrile illnesses are predominant.
Material and methods
A hospital-based prospective cross-sectional study was conducted from September 2011 to February 2012. Febrile children were serially recruited and demographic and clinical data were collected using a standardized data collection tool. A blood culture was performed and identification of the isolates was undertaken using in-house biochemical tests. Susceptibility to common antibiotics was investigated using the disc diffusion methods.
Of the 1081 children admitted during the study period, 317 (29.3%) met the inclusion criteria and were recruited, of whom 195 (61.5%) and 122 (38.5%) were male and female respectively. The median age was 18 months with an interquartile range of 9 to 36 months. Of the 317 children, 251 (79.2%) were below or equal to 36 months of age. The prevalence of bacteremia was 6.6%. A higher prevalence of bacteraemia was observed in children below 36 months than in those ≥ 36 months (7.5% vs. 3.0%, p = 0.001). Predictors of bacteraemia were an axillary temperature of >38.5 °C (OR =7, 95% CI = 2.2 - 14.8, p-value = 0.0001), a positive malaria slide (OR =5, 95% CI = 3.0 - 21.2, p-value = 0.0001) and a high neutrophils’ count (OR =21 95% CI = 5.6 - 84, p-value = 0.0001). Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae accounted for 7 (33.3%) and 6 (28.6%) of all the isolates respectively. Others gram-negatives bacteria were Citrobacter spp 2 (9.5%), Enterobacter spp 1 (4.25%), Pseudomonas spp 2 (9.5%), Proteus spp 1 (4.25%) and Salmonella spp 1 (4.25%). These isolates were highly resistant to ampicillin (95%), co-trimoxazole (90%), tetracycline (90%), gentamicin (80%), augmentin (80%), chloramphenicol (65%), ceftriaxone (35%), cefotaxime (35%) ciprofloxacin (30%), amikacin (30%), ceftazidime (25%) and norfloxacine (10%).
Multi-resistant gram-negative bacteria are the commonest cause of bacteremia in under-fives attending the Bugando Medical Centre, Mwanza, Tanzania. A high body temperature, a positive malaria slide and a high absolute neutrophils’ count were all independent risk factors found to predict bacteremia. A higher mortality rate was observed in children with bacteraemia. Continuous epidemiological surveillance should be conducted so that a proper and effective antibiotics management can be instituted, especially in children with a high grade fever, a positive malaria slide and a high neutrophils’ count.
PMCID: PMC3665601  PMID: 23657136
21.  Tuberculous bowel obstruction at a university teaching hospital in Northwestern Tanzania: a surgical experience with 118 cases 
Bowel obstruction resulting from intestinal tuberculosis has been reported to be more prevalent in developing countries including Tanzania. This study was undertaken to describe the clinicopathological profile, surgical management and outcome of tuberculous intestinal obstruction in our local setting and to identify factors responsible for poor outcome among these patients.
This was a prospective descriptive study of patients operated for tuberculous intestinal obstruction at Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) in northwestern Tanzania from April 2008 to March 2012. Ethical approval to conduct the study was obtained from relevant authorities. Statistical data analysis was performed using SPSS version 17.0.
A total of 118 patients with tuberculous intestinal obstruction were studied. The male to female ratio was 1.8: 1. The median age was 26 years (range 11-67 years). The modal age group was 21-30 years. Thirty-one (26.3%) patients had associated pulmonary tuberculosis and 25 (21.2%) patients were HIV positive with a median CD4+ count of 225 cells /μl. Small bowel strictures were the most common operative findings accounting for 72.9% of cases. The ileo-caecal region was the commonest area of involvement in 68 (57.6%) patients. The right hemicolectomy with ileo-transverse anastomosis was the most frequent surgical procedure performed in 66 (55.9%) patients. Postoperatively all the patients received antituberculous drugs for a period of one year. Postoperative complication rate was 37.3% and surgical site infection (SSI) was the most frequent complication in 42.8% of cases. HIV positivity and low CD4+ count were the main predictors of SSI (p < 0.001). The overall median length of hospital stay was 24 days. Patients who had postoperative complications stayed longer in the hospital and this was statistically significant (p = 0.011). Mortality rate was 28.8% and it was significantly associated with co-existing medical illness, delayed presentation, HIV positivity, low CD 4 count (<200 cells/μl), ASA class and presence of complications (p < 0.001). The follow up of patients was generally poor as more than fifty percent of patients were lost to follow up.
Tuberculous bowel obstruction remains rampant in our environment and contributes significantly to high morbidity and mortality. The majority of patients present late when the disease becomes complicated. A high index of suspicion, proper evaluation and therapeutic trial in suspected patients is essential for an early diagnosis and timely definitive treatment, in order to decrease the morbidity and mortality associated with this disease.
PMCID: PMC3608959  PMID: 23497503
Bowel obstruction; Intestinal tuberculosis; Clinicopathological profile; Surgical management; Outcome; Tanzania
22.  Early and Efficient Detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Sputum by Microscopic Observation of Broth Cultures 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(2):e57527.
Early, efficient and inexpensive methods for the detection of pulmonary tuberculosis are urgently needed for effective patient management as well as to interrupt transmission. These methods to detect M. tuberculosis in a timely and affordable way are not yet widely available in resource-limited settings. In a developing-country setting, we prospectively evaluated two methods for culturing and detecting M. tuberculosis in sputum. Sputum samples were cultured in liquid assay (micro broth culture) in microplate wells and growth was detected by microscopic observation, or in Löwenstein–Jensen (LJ) solid media where growth was detected by visual inspection for colonies. Sputum samples were collected from 321 tuberculosis (TB) suspects attending Bugando Medical Centre, in Mwanza, Tanzania, and were cultured in parallel. Pulmonary tuberculosis cases were diagnosed using the American Thoracic Society diagnostic standards. There were a total of 200 (62.3%) pulmonary tuberculosis cases. Liquid assay with microscopic detection detected a significantly higher proportion of cases than LJ solid culture: 89.0% (95% confidence interval [CI], 84.7% to 93.3%) versus 77.0% (95% CI, 71.2% to 82.8%) (p = 0.0007). The median turn around time to diagnose tuberculosis was significantly shorter for micro broth culture than for the LJ solid culture, 9 days (interquartile range [IQR] 7–13), versus 21 days (IQR 14–28) (p<0.0001). The cost for micro broth culture (labor inclusive) in our study was US $4.56 per sample, versus US $11.35 per sample for the LJ solid culture. The liquid assay (micro broth culture) is an early, feasible, and inexpensive method for detection of pulmonary tuberculosis in resource limited settings.
PMCID: PMC3585352  PMID: 23469014
23.  High prevalence of Non–typhoid salmonella bacteraemia among febrile HIV adult patients admitted at a tertiary Hospital, North-Western Tanzania 
Bacterial blood stream infections constitute a significant public-health problem and it is an important cause of morbidity and mortality in HIV infected patients. Little is known in developing countries regarding salmonella bacteraemia among HIV patients. The purpose of this study was to determine the bacterial pathogens causing blood stream infection among febrile adults attending in a tertiary hospital North-Western, Tanzania.
A prospective cross-sectional study involving 346 consecutive, febrile adult patients admitted at Bugando Medical Centre was conducted. Demographic and other data were collected using standardized questionnaires. Blood culture was done followed by susceptibility testing using disc diffusion method. HIV testing was also performed as per Tanzania national algorithm and total white blood cell counts and CD4+ counts determined.
Of 346 febrile adult patients 33 (9.5%) had blood stream infections. The common isolates were Salmonella spp 13(39.4%), Escherichia coli 8 (24.2%), Streptococcus pneumonia 5(15.2%), Staphylococcus aureus 4(12.1%), Citrobacter spp 1(3%), Streptococcus pyogenes 1(3%) and Klebsiella pneumonia 1(3%). A total of 156 (45.1%) patients were HIV infected; of whom 12/156 (7.6%) were infected by non-typhoid Salmonella spp compared to 1/190 (0.5%) of non-HIV infected patients (RRR 11.2, p=0.029) infected with Salmonella typhi. HIV infected patients with bacteraemia had significantly lower CD4+ count than those without bacteraemia (median 28 vs. 88 cells/ml, p=0.01). Patients with salmonella bacteraemia had significantly lower median of WBC than those with non-salmonella as well as those without bacteraemia (median, 3.6 vs. 17.5 vs. 9.8x109, p=0.0001). All Salmonella spp were sensitive to ceftriaxone and imipenem, while being 84%, 69.2%, 38% and 8% resistant to chloramphenicol, ampicillin, sulphamethaxazole/trimethoprim and ciprofloxacin respectively. Predictors of mortality were HIV infection (OR 2.3, p=0.006), Glasgow coma score of less than 15 (OR 3.4, p=0.0001) and night sweats (OR 2.4, p=0.014).
Non-typhoid Salmonella spp that are highly resistant to common antibiotics are predominant cause of bacterial blood stream infection among HIV patients attending Bugando Medical Centre. Continuous surveillance and intervention strategies should be put in place to monitor and manage cases of bloodstream infections in HIV-positive patients in Mwanza, Tanzania.
PMCID: PMC3540015  PMID: 23075077
24.  Experiences with Surgical treatment of chronic lower limb ulcers at a Tertiary hospital in northwestern Tanzania: A prospective review of 300 cases 
BMC Dermatology  2012;12:17.
Chronic lower limb ulcers constitute a major public health problem of great important all over the world and contribute significantly to high morbidity and long-term disabilities. There is paucity of information regarding chronic lower limb ulcers in our setting; therefore it was necessary to conduct this study to establish the patterns and outcome of chronic lower limb ulcers and to identify predictors of outcome in our local setting.
This was a descriptive prospective study of patients with chronic lower limb ulcers conducted at Bugando Medical Centre between November 2010 and April 2012. Ethical approval to conduct the study was sought from relevant authorities. Statistical data analysis was done using SPSS version 17.0 and STATA version 11.0.
A total of 300 patients were studied. Their ages ranged from 3 months to 85 years (median 32 years). The male to female ratio was 2:1. The median duration of illness was 44 days. Traumatic ulcer was the most frequent type of ulcer accounting for 60.3% of patients. The median duration of illness was 44 days. The leg was commonly affected in 33.7% of cases and the right side (48.7%) was frequently involved. Out of 300 patients, 212 (70.7%) had positive aerobic bacterial growth within 48 hours of incubation. Pseudomonas aeruginosa (25.5%) was the most frequent gram negative bacteria isolated, whereas gram positive bacteria commonly isolated was Staphylococcus aureus (13.7%). Twenty (6.7%) patients were HIV positive with a median CD4+ count of 350 cells/μl. Mycological investigation was not performed. Bony involvement was radiologically reported in 83.0% of cases. Histopathological examination performed in 56 patients revealed malignancy in 20 (35.7%) patients, of which malignant melanoma (45.0%) was the most common histopathological type. The vast majority of patients, 270 (90.0%) were treated surgically, and surgical debridement was the most common surgical procedure performed in 24.1% of cases. Limb amputation rate was 8.7%. Postoperative complication rate was 58.3% of which surgical site infection (77.5%) was the most common post-operative complications. The median length of hospital stay was 23 days. Mortality rate was 4.3%. Out of the two hundred and eighty-seven (95.7%) survivors, 253 (91.6%) were treated successfully and discharged well (healed). After discharge, only 35.5% of cases were available for follow up at the end of study period.
Chronic lower limb ulcers remain a major public health problem in this part of Tanzania. The majority of patients in our environment present late when the disease is already in advanced stages. Early recognition and aggressive treatment of the acute phase of chronic lower limb ulcers at the peripheral hospitals and close follow-up are urgently needed to improve outcomes of these patients in our environment.
PMCID: PMC3507740  PMID: 23020814
Chronic lower limb ulcers; Patterns; Treatment outcome; Predictors of outcome; Tanzania
25.  Complete Sequences of Plasmids from the Hemolytic-Uremic Syndrome-Associated Escherichia coli Strain HUSEC41 
Journal of Bacteriology  2012;194(2):532-533.
The complete and annotated sequences of four plasmids from a historical enteroaggregative Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (HUSEC) serotype O104:H4 strain, HUSEC41/01-09591, isolated in 2001 in Germany are reported.
PMCID: PMC3256666  PMID: 22207742

Results 1-25 (35)