|"Infections due to Staphylococcus aureus have been on the increase globally with serious implications for public health. Both adults and children can be affected. Although S. aureus commonly resides in the nose of apparently healthy humans, it can also colonize such other areas as the intestine, vagina, groin and armpit. It is known to cause asymptomatic and sometimes uncomplicated skin infections but has also been implicated in serious diseases such as endocarditis and toxic shock syndrome. Mounting evidence appears to support increasing Stapylococcus aureus colonization and infection among pregnant and postpartum women as well as neonates. Other members of the genus Staphylococcus have also been increasingly implicated as causative agents for a variety of disease conditions. In developing countries and resource poor settings, due to lack of adequate facilities or cost, staphylococcal isolates may not be definitively identified to the species and strain level. The result is that other members of the genus Staphylococcus may be erroneously identified as . Besides the obvious negative impact this practice may have on chemotherapeutic outcome and antibiotic resistance resulting from misuse of these drugs, the true prevalence of the various staphylococcal pathogens, especially Staphylococcus aureus, may not be known particularly with respect to pregnant women.
There is an increasing colonization and infection of the female reproductive tract by Staphylococcus aureus and other staphylococcal pathogens. Since these pathogens have been known to be transferable from infected mother to her infant either during or after birth and considering their virulence potential, there is need to take a closer look at the rate of rectovaginal colonization by these organisms in this population and their possible contribution to maternal and infant health.