Research Article

Antibiotic resistance in Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae. Report of a study group on bacterial resistance.

Br Med J 1978; 1 doi: (Published 24 June 1978) Cite this as: Br Med J 1978;1:1657
  1. A J Howard,
  2. C J Hince,
  3. J D Williams


    Twenty laboratories in England and Scotland took part in 1977 in a survey of antibiotic resistance in Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae. In Str pneumoniae 59 (6.8%) of the 866 strains studied were resistant to tetracycline and three to chloramphenicol, and one strain showed a decreased susceptibility to penicillin. The prevalence of resistance to tetracycline was lower than that found in a similar study performed in 1975. Nine hundred and fifty-two strains of H influenzae were examined: 15 (1.6%) were resistant to ampicillin (all were beta-lactamase producers) and 26 (2.7%) to tetracycline. Only two strains were resistant to chloramphenicol and two to trimethoprim. Sixty-three H influenzae strains were capsulated. Thirty-four of these were of Pittman type b, and antibiotic resistance, particularly to ampicillin, was more common in these than in other serotypes or non-typable strains. Some variation was seen in the resistance rate of both H influenzae and Str pneumoniae to tetracycline in strains from different centres, but too few were isolated to assess whether this represented a true geographical difference.