Staphylococci in orthopaedic surgical wounds

C. R. Arciola, M. Cervellati, V. Pirini, S. Gamberini, L. Montanaro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


From 50 infected surgical wounds of orthopaedic patients, 43 (86%) staphylococcal strains were isolated. 34 of all these staphylococci belonged to Staphylococcus aureus species (i.e. 68% of all isolates from surgical wounds; 79% of staphylococcal isolates); 9 were coagulase-negative staphylococci (i.e. 21% of all isolates from surgical wounds; 18% of staphylococcal isolates). Among microorganisms isolated from the wounds we also found 2 (4%) of the Enterobacteriaceae family; 2 (4%) of the Pseudomonas genus; 3 (6%) of the Streptococcus genus. Thus, orthopaedic surgical wounds were infected by staphylococci (mainly S. aureus) more frequently than by other micro-organisms. All the staphylococcal strains were screened for methicillin resistance by agar disk diffusion testing and for the presence of mecA gene responsible for methicillin resistance by PCR. 32% of the S. aureus and 33% of the S. epidermidis strains resulted methicillin resistant and mecA-positive. The data confirm the diffusion of methicillin resistant S. aureus in surgical site infections and shows that the so-called "new pathogens", i.e. S. epidermidis and other coagulase-negative staphylococci, also exhibit a frequent and hazardous methicillin-resisting ability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)365-369
Number of pages5
JournalNew Microbiologica
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2001


  • Coagulase-negative staphylocci
  • MecA
  • Methicillin resistance
  • Orthopaedic surgical wounds
  • Staphyloccus aureus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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