Sunil Kumar Yadav, S. P. Yadav, P. Kanodia, N. K. Bhatta, R. R. Singh, B. Khanal


Introduction: Nosocomial sepsis is a common and serious problem of neonates who are admitted for intensive care. With advancement of technologies in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) worldwide, survival rates of newborns particularly low birth weight and premature babies are higher. This has led to longer duration of hospital stay predisposing these babies to nosocomial infections (NI). Hence, it is one of the main causes of morbidity and mortality in NICU. The objective of the study was to determine the profile and risk factors for nosocomial sepsis in NICU. 

Materials and Methods: This was a prospective cohort study conducted in a seven-bedded teaching and referral NICU. All neonates in NICU who did not have any sign of infection at admission and remained hospitalized for at least 48 h were observed. Healthcare-associated Infections was diagnosed according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria. Risk factors for NI were analyzed with Chi-square test and logistic regression model. < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. 

Results: The incidence rate and density of NI were 47% and 39.3 infections per 1000 patient-days, respectively. Staphylococcus aureus was the most commonly isolated agent in blood cultures of patients with nosocomial sepsis. Low birth weight and mechanical ventilation were found to be related with nosocomial sepsis (< 0.05). 

Conclusions: This study revealed the high incidence of nosocomial sepsis. Low birth weight and mechanical ventilation were the most important risk factors for sepsis. 

Key words: Neonatal intensive care unit, nosocomial sepsis, risk factors