Microbiological profile of corneal ulcer cases diagnosed in a tertiary care ophthalmological institute in Nepal

Sharmila Suwal, Dinesh Bhandari, Pratigya Thapa, Mohan Krishna Shrestha, Jyoti Amatya

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Background: Corneal ulcer, a major cause of monocular blindness in developing countries has consistently been listed as the major cause of blindness and visual disability in many of the developing nations in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, ranking second only to cataract. This study was carried out to determine the microbiological profile of corneal ulcer cases diagnosed among patients visiting Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology (TIO), Nepal. Methods: A total of 101 corneal scrapping samples were tested for routine culture and antibiotic susceptibility at the pathology department of TIO Nepal from April to October 2014. Microorganisms were identified by using standard microbiological procedures following the manual of American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and their antibiotic susceptibility test, performed by Kirby-Bauer disc diffusion method in conformity with the CLSI guideline. Results: Out of 101 samples analyzed, 44.6% (45/101) showed positive growth with bacterial isolates i.e., 56% (25/45), more prevalent than fungus i.e., 44% (20/45). Among bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae (31.1%, N = 14) was isolated in highest number whereas Fusarium (13.4%, N = 6) was the most common fungus species. Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the only Gram negative bacteria isolated from corneal ulcer cases. All bacterial isolates were found to be susceptible to the quinolone group of antibiotics (moxifloxacin followed by ofloxacin and ciprofloxacin). Conclusions: These findings showcase the current trend in the microbiological etiology of corneal ulcer in Nepal, which have important public health implications for the treatment as well as prevention of corneal ulceration in the developing world.

Original languageEnglish
Article number209
Number of pages6
JournalBMC Ophthalmology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Corneal ulcer
  • Microbiological profile
  • Nepal

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