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Research Articles

Proportion of Superficial fungal infections among the cleaning staff members at University of Sri Jayewardenepura

Authors:

J Kottahachchi ,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About J
Consultant Microbiologist, Department of Microbiolody,Faculty of Medical Sciences
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S Perera,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About S
MLS student, Faculty of Medical Sciences
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S Rajakulasooriya,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About S
MLS student, Faculty of Medical Sciences
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MM Weerasekera,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About MM
Senior Lecturer, Department of Microbiolody,Faculty of Medical Sciences
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C Gunasekera,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About C
Senior Lecturer, Department of Microbiolody,Faculty of Medical Sciences
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A Bogahawatta,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About A
Medical Laboratory Technologist, Department of Microbiolody,Faculty of Medical Sciences
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N Fernando

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, LK
About N
Professor in Microbiology, Department of Microbiolody,Faculty of Medical Sciences
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Abstract

Introduction

Superficial fungal infections (SFIs) are infections of the keratinous tissue caused by dermatophytes, yeasts and non-dermatophyte fungi.  Cleaning staff are identified as a risk category for the SFI as they are frequently exposed to moist environment.

Objective

To determine the proportion of infection, knowledge, attitudes, practices and risk factors of superficial fungal infections among the cleaning staff members at University of Sri Jayewardenepura

Methods

Eighty two cleaning staff members were included in the study. Clinical examination for SFIs was done by a medical officer and sample processing was carried out at the Department of Microbiology at University of Sri Jayewardenepura between May to October 2012. Laboratory identification of the fungal organisms was done using direct microscopy (10% KOH) followed by culture on Sabouraud's Dextrose Agar. Morphological and physiological methods were used to specieate the isolated fungi. An interviewer administrated questionnaire was carried out to assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAPs) on SFIs. Data were categorized and scored based on variables that were to be analyzed.

Results

Forty one of 82 participants (51.2%) had SFIs. Out of the 56 clinically suspected cases 76 specimens were collected from different infected sites. Four skin scrapings were identified as Pityriasis versicolor by direct smear. Out of 57 scrapings and nail clippings, 45 (79%) were KOH positive, twelve (21%) were negative for direct smear.  Out of direct smear positive specimens only 28 were culture positive while 17 were culture negative. Aspergillus niger was the commonest organism isolated from these specimens (20) followed by the non albicans Candida spp. (7), Candida albicans (2), dematiaceous fungi (7), Pityriasis versicolor (4), Fusarium spp. (3) and dermatophyte species. Multiple fungal species were isolated in 4 specimens.

Regarding total marks presentation of KAPs, our study population had an unsatisfactory level of knowledge 35(42.2%) while majority 40 (48.8%) had good attitudes, and 48 (58.5%) were shown to have a satisfactory level of safety practices.

Describing the risk factors for SFIs among cleaning staff was one objective of our study. However our study showed that there was no statistically significant relationship between the risk factors with SFIs.

Conclusion

Aspergillus niger was the commonest pathogen causing SFIs in the study group. Although participants have a satisfactory level of knowledge, attitudes and practices towards the SFIs regular examination of this population is recommended because they are at high risk for SFIs.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4038/sljid.v4i1.6061

How to Cite: Kottahachchi, J. et al., (2014). Proportion of Superficial fungal infections among the cleaning staff members at University of Sri Jayewardenepura. Sri Lankan Journal of Infectious Diseases. 4(1), pp.38–47. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljid.v4i1.6061
Published on 28 Feb 2014.
Peer Reviewed

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