In vitro susceptibility of oral Candida albicans isolates to chlorhexidine
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Fungal infections are an important medical problem in patients from different risk groups. The majority of these infections are caused by Candida spp., with over 50 % due to C. albicans. The purpose of the study was to evaluate in vitro chlorhexidine effect on C. albicans colonizing the mouth and throat isolated from 5 population groups. The study material included the reference strains of C. albicans ATCC 2091 and C. albicans ATCC 10231, routinely used for evaluation of antimicrobials, and 120 clinical isolates of C. albicans from: hospitalized cancer patients (30 isolates), chronic HCV patients (31 isolates), immunocompromised patients (28 isolates), healthy school-age children (31 isolates), elderly people – aged 65 years or older (30 isolates). Chlorhexidine inhibited the growth of C. albicans at the concentrations of 0.625-5 µg/ml (in particular, 2.5 µg/ml solution was effective against strains from immunocompromised patients and 5 µg/ml – against the remaining isolates). The yeasts were also killed by 2.5-20 µg/ml chlorhexidine solutions. The concentration of 5 µg/ml was particularly active against the strains isolated from the elderly, immunocompromised and lung cancer patients, while 10 µg/ml inhibited the growth of the strains from the remaining two groups. Moreover, C. albicans isolates from hepatitis C patients and healthy children comparing to strains from the elderly were less sensitive to chlorhexidine fungicidal effect and these differences were statistically significant. According to our studies, the fungicidal effect of chlorhexidine seems to depend on the origin of the tested oral C. albicans strains from various patient groups.
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