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Pediatric neck abscesses caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus: A retrospective study of incidence and susceptibilities over time

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September 1, 2010
by Parker A. Velargo, MD, Emily L. Burke, MD, and Evelyn A. Kluka, MD


Since the early 2000s, studies have shown that the incidence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections in the pediatric population has been increasing. Moreover, studies also have indicated a trend toward increased resistance to commonly used antibiotics over time. However, few studies have specifically focused on such trends in pediatric neck abscesses. We undertook a retrospective study of 109 patients to compare the incidence of pediatric neck abscesses caused by MRSA during two separate 5-year periods at Children's Hospital of New Orleans in an attempt to determine if the incidence was indeed increasing. We also analyzed differences in MRSA susceptibility to various antibiotics over the same two time periods-January 1997 through December 2001 (n = 22) and January 2002 through December 2006 (n = 87). We found a statistically significant increase in the incidence of MRSA between the first 5-year period and the second-from 25 to 70.3% (p = 0.0388). We did not find any significant difference in antibiotic susceptibility patterns between the two 5-year periods.

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