Suppurative Cervical Lymphadenitis in Infancy: Microbiology and Sociology

Mitchell L. Worley, Joseph M. Seif, Amy S. Whigham, James W. Mims, Avinash K. Shetty, Adele K. Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Objective. To investigate the associations between patient age, sociological factors, and the microbiology of pediatric neck infections. Methods. Retrospective chart review of children up to 5 years old who underwent surgical management of suppurative cervical lymphadenitis. Results. A total of 76 individuals met inclusion criteria; 93% of culture-positive infections were caused by Staphylococcus aureus in infants, compared with 59% in children between 13 months and 5 years of age (P =.002). Of the S aureus isolates, 51% were methicillin-resistant S aureus (MRSA) and 49% were methicillin-sensitive S aureus. Methicillin resistance was associated with African American race (P =.004); 67% of participants received empirical antibiotics prior to admission. Of these, 73% received antibiotics in the β-lactam class, and 25% received treatment with clindamycin. Conclusions. Incidence of MRSA is high in infants with cervical lymphadenitis who fail empirical antibiotic therapy and require surgical management. Empirical coverage for cervical lymphadenitis with β-lactam antibiotics may provide inadequate coverage for early infection in this population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)629-634
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Pediatrics
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 01-01-2015
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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