Ebeigbe, J. A. and Osaoyuwu, A. B.
Ophthalmia neonatorum is a form of conjunctivitis occurring in the newborn and occurs during the first, 28 days of life. It can be a leading cause of blindness in newborns. This study was carried out to determine if colostrum (breast milk) has any effect on organisms implicated in ophthalmia neonatorum and to compare the effect with that of gentamicin, a commercially available antibiotic. One hundred and two samples were collected from 100 neonates with symptoms by swabbing the lower conjunctival surfaces and these swabs were analyzed microscopically. The age of the neonates ranged from birth to 10 days and the mean age was 5.80 days. The specimens were cultured onto pre-labelled oven-dried agar plates at 37 C for 24 hours. The chocolate plates were incubated overnight after which the cultured plates with growth were streaked and sub-cultured for another 24 hours at 37 C. The agar plates without growth were further incubated for 24 hours at 37 C, after which those with growth were subcultured for purification. Antibiotic susceptibility patterns were determined by using disk-diffusion tests. After culture and emergence of growth of the different microorganisms, 65.60% were found to be, 22.90% were, 9.40% were while 2.10% was. Gentamicin inhibitory effects on causative organisms were 60.30%, inhibitory action on two of the organisms isolated ( and ) but its action was sustained for 4 hours in about 42.20% of and for 6 hours in 53.30% of Streptococcus spp. Due to this short time effect of colostrum on only two of the causative organisms, it is recommended that neonates with ophthalmia neonatorum be taken to the hospital and conventional antibiotic treatment be given to them.
Keywords: Staphylococcus aureus Ophthalmia neonatorium Chlamydial trachomatis