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Volume 37, Number 4, August 2004

Proficiency of determination of vancomycin susceptibility in enterococci by clinical laboratories in Taiwan

Jang-Jih Lu, Shih-Yi Lee, Cherng-Lih Perng
Division of Clinical Pathology, Department of Pathology, Tri-Service General Hospital and National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, ROC

Received: September 1, 2003    Revised: October 2, 2003    Accepted: November 4, 2003   


Corresponding author:

Jang-Jih Lu, M.D., Ph.D., Division of Clinical Pathology, Department of Pathology, Tri-Service General Hospital, National Defense Medical College, No. 325, Section 2, Cheng-kung Road, Taipei, Taiwan 114, ROC. E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it




Eighty clinical microbiology laboratories in Taiwan were evaluated for proficiency in the determination of vancomycin susceptibility of enterococci. Each laboratory was given 1 vancomycin-sensitive isolate and 3 vancomycinresistant enterococci (VRE) isolates to determine the levels of vancomycin resistance. Among a total of 240 tests performed, 153 (63.8%) correctly determined the levels of vancomycin resistance of the survey isolates. Seventy eight (98%) of the 80 laboratories accurately identified the high level of vancomycin resistant isolates [Enterococcus faecalis; minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) >256 µg/mL]. Seventy two laboratories (90%) correctly determined the level of vancomycin resistance of another VRE with a vancomycin MIC of 64 µg/mL. Only 3 of the 80 laboratories correctly determined the intermediate-level vancomycin resistant isolates (Enterococcuscasseliflavus; MIC = 8 µg/mL). Eight laboratories reported the vancomycin-susceptible isolate as being vancomycinresistant or of intermediate susceptibility. This survey demonstrated that clinical microbiology laboratories in Taiwan are proficient in detecting high-level but not low-level VRE, suggesting a need to improve their proficiency in VRE detection.



Key words:

Enterococcus, laboratories, vancomycin resistance



J Microbiol Immunol Infect 2004;37:242-245.