Pediatric Surgery International

, Volume 30, Issue 5, pp 521–525

Does Staphylococcusaureus nasal carriage require eradication prior to elective ambulatory surgery in children?

  • Zvi Steiner
  • Orna Ben Natan
  • Igor Sukhotnik
  • Arnold G. Coran
  • Gershon Keren
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00383-014-3489-7

Cite this article as:
Steiner, Z., Natan, O.B., Sukhotnik, I. et al. Pediatr Surg Int (2014) 30: 521. doi:10.1007/s00383-014-3489-7



Rates of community-associated Staphylococcus aureus, and particularly of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in children, have increased in recent years. We investigated rates of nasal colonization of S. aureus, and a possible correlation between nasal carriage and wound infection.


A prospective study of children scheduled for elective day-care surgical procedures between January 2008 and December 2012 at one medical center. Nasal swabs were taken before surgery, and follow-up was performed 1–2 weeks following surgery.


Of 1,127 children (median age 2 years, 70.6 % males), positive nasal swabs were detected in 228 (20.2 %). Rates of S. aureus nasal carriage were lowest for ages 6 months to 2 years and highest for ages 4–11 years. Child’s sex did not associate with the risk for positive nasal swabs. Positive nasal swabs for MRSA were detected in five boys (0.62 % of the population). Five children (0.44 %) had wound infection. None of them was a nasal carrier.


No correlation was observed between positive nasal swabs and wound infection in children who were candidates for elective ambulatory operations. This suggests that evaluation of S. aureus nasal carriage and eradication may not be necessary in this population.


Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)Methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA)Community-associated infectionsNasal swabSurgical woundNasal colonization

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zvi Steiner
    • 1
  • Orna Ben Natan
    • 2
  • Igor Sukhotnik
    • 3
  • Arnold G. Coran
    • 4
  • Gershon Keren
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Pediatric Surgery BHillel Yaffe Medical CenterHaderaIsrael
  2. 2.Department of EpidemiologyHillel Yaffe Medical CenterHaderaIsrael
  3. 3.Department of Pediatric SurgeryBnai Zion Medical Center Affiliated with the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, The TechnionHaifaIsrael
  4. 4.Section of Pediatric SurgeryC.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and University of Michigan Medical SchoolAnn ArborUSA
  5. 5.Department of Infectious DiseaseHillel Yaffe Medical CenterHaderaIsrael