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December 13, 1976

Acute Otitis Media Caused by Ampicillin-Resistant Haemophilus influenzae Type B

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics (Drs Crosson, Watson, and Bailey), National Naval Medical Center, and the Department of Clinical Pathology (Dr MacLowry), Clinical Center, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md.

JAMA. 1976;236(24):2778-2779. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03270250046027

IN THE last several years, multiple centers have identified ampicillin-resistant Haemophilus influenzae type B in septicemia, epiglottitis, meningitis, and other severe childhood infections. Such reports have prompted the recommendation to add chloramphenicol to ampicillin for the initial therapy of these infections in children. More recently, cases of childhood otitis media caused by ampicillin-resistant nontypable H influenzae have been described.1 Nontypable strains cause most cases of H influenzae otitis media but seldom cause systemic infections.6 On the other hand, H influenzae type B otitis media has been associated with meningitis or septicemia in 14% of the cases.2 This report describes a case of otitis media caused by ampicillin-resistant H influenzae type B and emphasizes the need for tympanocentesis in the diagnosis of this infection.

Report of a Case  A 2-year-old boy was seen in the Pediatric Clinic of the National Naval Medical Center in January 1975 with bilateral