Background: Gram-negative antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is of global concern, yet there are few reports from low- and low-middle-income countries, where antimicrobial choices are often limited.
Methods: This study offers a systematic review of PubMed, Embase, and World Health Organization (WHO) regional databases of Gram-negative bacteremia in children in low- and low-middle-income countries reporting AMR since 2001.
Results: Data included 30 studies comprising 71 326 children, of whom 7056 had positive blood cultures, and Gram-negative organisms were isolated in 4710 (66.8%). In neonates, Klebsiella pneumoniae median resistance to ampicillin was 94% and cephalosporins 84% in Asia; 100% and 50% in Africa. Large regional variations in resistance rates to commonly prescribed antibiotics for Salmonella spp. were identified. Multidrug resistance (resistance to ampicillin, chloramphenicol, and cotrimoxazole) was present in 30% (interquartile range [IQR], 0-59.6) in Asia and 75% (IQR, 30-85.4) in Africa.
Conclusions: There is a need for an international pediatric antimicrobial resistance surveillance system that collects local epidemiological data to improve the evidence base for the WHO guidance for childhood Gram-negative bacteremia.
Keywords: Gram-negative bacteremia.; antimicrobial resistance; children; epidemiology.
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