Annals of Clinical Microbiology, The official Journal of the Korean Society of Clinical Microbiology


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pISSN 2288-0585 eISSN 2288-6850

The Prevalence and Characteristics of Bacteria Causing Acute Diarrhea in Korea, 2012

Original article

Annals of Clinical Microbiology (Ann Clin Microbiol) 2013 December, Volume 16, Issue 4, pages 174-181.

The Prevalence and Characteristics of Bacteria Causing Acute Diarrhea in Korea, 2012

Nan-Ok Kim1, Injun Cha1, Jae-Seok Kim2, Gyung Tae Chung1, Yeon-Ho Kang1, Sahyun Hong1
1Division of Enteric Diseases, Korea National Institute of Health, KCDC, Cheongwon, 2Department of Laboratory Medicine, Hallym University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea


Background: Through change in the climate and living environment, bacterial pathogens that cause diarrhea also change. This study sought to determine the characteristics of pathogens according to species, isolated region, and patient age/sex using National Surveillance Data for diarrhea, and to provide basic data for the prevention of diarrheal disease.

Methods: From January to December 2012, stool specimens were collected from 21,180 diarrheal patients in Korea to identify the pathogenic bacteria involved. Pathogenic bacteria were analyzed according to isolated region and patient age/sex. Identification and analysis of the pathogens were conducted based on the Guidelines of the National Institute of Health Diagnostic Laboratory: Disease-specific protocol (2005).

Results: Among the 21,180 stool specimens, pathogenic bacteria known to cause diarrhea were isolated from 2,444 stool specimens (11.5%). The isolation rate was highest in the summer (from June to September) for most pathogenic bacteria, except Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Clostridium perfringens. The isolation rate of pathogenic bacteria based on patient age was highest in children under the age of 10.

Conclusion: Hygiene education should be addressed in diarrheal disease-susceptible groups, such as children under 10, people in their 50s, and those greater than 70 years old, and ongoing monitoring for pathogens is needed. In addition, an efficient information system and surveillance program should be continued for infection prevention. (Ann Clin Microbiol 2013;16: 174-181)


Diarrhea, EnterNet, Surveillance, Pathogen