Vol 7, No 1 (2022)
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Published online: 2022-02-25

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Effect of intimate hygiene fluids on the number of Listeria monocytogenes isolated from women

Krzysztof Skowron1, Katarzyna Grudlewska-Buda1, Natalia Wiktorczyk-Kapischke1, Ewa Wałecka-Zacharska2, Zuzanna Kraszewska1, Zuzanna Bernaciak1, Arleta Kotlarek1, Anna Budzyńska, Eugenia Gospodarek-Komkowska1
Medical Research Journal 2022;7(1):24-31.

Abstract

Introduction. Listeria monocytogenes is an etiological factor of listeriosis, widespread in the environment. The consequence of fetal infection in the second trimester of pregnancy in most cases is the death of the fetus or stillbirth.

Material and methods. In this study, 7 strains of L. monocytogenes isolated from the vagina of women and the reference strain L. monocytogenes ATCC 19111 were used. The examined strains were treated with five commercially available intimate hygiene washes. The efficacy of the wash fluids used was based on the induced decrease in the number of bacteria expressed as a logarithmic colony-forming unit (CFU) × ml-1.

Results. The study showed that probiotic fluid (pH = 3.5) decreased the number of bacteria by an average of 4.56 log CFU × ml-1, while wash fluid intended for pregnant and puerperal women (pH = 4.0) reduced the number of L. monocytogenes by an average of 1.55 log CFU × ml-1. Lower bactericidal efficacy was observed in the case of wash fluids intended for everyday use. The fluid containing marigold extract and the liquid with the addition of rice proteins and arnica extract decreased the number of L. monocytogenes by an average of 1.11 log CFU × ml-1, and the fluid with silver and copper nanoparticles by 1.14 log CFU × ml-1.

Conclusions. Everyday use of intimate hygiene washes reduces the risk of urogenital infections in women and supports their treatment. Prevention with the use of probiotic wash solutions may reduce the number of vaginal infections caused by L. monocytogenes, which is especially important in the case of pregnant women because the number of patients diagnosed with listeriosis has increased.

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