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Sample Essay

Although the salivarius sp. (viridans) of streptococcus is a normal occurring bacteria in the oral cavity, it is its opportunistic nature that becomes pathogenic once the defense mechanisms of the body are down.

In neutropenic states this organism can lead to bacteremia, sub acute endocarditis amongst other diseases leading to severe complications especially since the body cannot fight these infections off. C J Graber (2001) along with his colleagues conducted a study on neutropenic stem cell transplant recipient patients, to observe the root cause of bacteremia in these patients and the risk factors that had lead to this condition. They observed that greater than 60% of the patients who had developed bacteremia were infected with Strep. viridans sp. (salivarius included). It was also found that these species were resistant to norfloxacin.  After taking into consideration other factors, the authors concluded that poor underlying dental health and frequent norfloxacin usage is the main underlying cause of streptococcal bacteremia.

This is important because from these findings more care can be given to oral hygiene in patients who require neutropenic states for treatment. Antibiotic usage can also be restricted and /or carefully regulated in these patients in order to prevent resistance development.

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