Procalcitonin guidance and reduction of antibiotic use in acute respiratory tract infection.
ABSTRACT Increasing worldwide development of antimicrobial resistance and the association of resistance development and antibiotic overuse make it necessary to seek strategies for safely reducing antibiotic use and selection pressure. In a first step, in a non-interventional study, the antibiotic prescription rates, initial procalcitonin (PCT) levels and outcome of 702 patients presenting with acute respiratory infection at 45 primary care physicians were observed. The second part was a randomised controlled non-inferiority trial comparing standard care with PCT-guided antimicrobial treatment in 550 patients in the same setting. Antibiotics were recommended at a PCT threshold of 0.25 ng·mL(-1). Clinical overruling was permitted. The primary end-point for non-inferiority was number of days with significant health impairment after 14 days. Antibiotics were prescribed in 30.3% of enrolled patients in the non-interventional study. In the interventional study, 36.7% of patients in the control group received antibiotics as compared to 21.5% in the PCT-guided group (41.6% reduction). In the modified intention-to-treat analysis, the numbers of days with significant health impairment were similar (mean 9.04 versus 9.00 for PCT-guided and control group, respectively; difference 0.04; 95% confidence interval -0.73-0.81). This was also true after adjusting for the most important confounders. In the PCT group, advice was overruled in 36 cases. There was no significant difference in primary end-point when comparing the PCT group treated as advised, the overruled PCT group and the control group (9.008 versus 9.250 versus 9.000 days; p = 0.9605). A simple one-point PCT measurement for guiding decisions on antibiotic treatment is non-inferior to standard treatment in terms of safety, and effectively reduced the antibiotic treatment rate by 41.6%.
Article: Procalcitonin to guide initiation and duration of antibiotic treatment in acute respiratory infections: an individual patient data meta-analysis.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Procalcitonin algorithms may reduce antibiotic use for acute respiratory tract infections (ARIs). We undertook an individual patient data meta-analysis to assess safety of this approach in different ARI diagnoses and different clinical settings. We identified clinical trials in which patients with ARI were assigned to receive antibiotics based on a procalcitonin algorithm or usual care by searching the Cochrane Register, MEDLINE, and EMBASE. Individual patient data from 4221 adults with ARIs in 14 trials were verified and reanalyzed to assess risk of mortality and treatment failure-overall and within different clinical settings and types of ARIs. Overall, there were 118 deaths in 2085 patients (5.7%) assigned to procalcitonin groups compared with 134 deaths in 2126 control patients (6.3%; adjusted odds ratio, 0.94; 95% confidence interval CI, .71-1.23)]. Treatment failure occurred in 398 procalcitonin group patients (19.1%) and in 466 control patients (21.9%; adjusted odds ratio, 0.82; 95% CI, .71-.97). Procalcitonin guidance was not associated with increased mortality or treatment failure in any clinical setting or ARI diagnosis. Total antibiotic exposure per patient was significantly reduced overall (median [interquartile range], from 8 [5-12] to 4 [0-8] days; adjusted difference in days, -3.47 [95% CI, -3.78 to -3.17]) and across all clinical settings and ARI diagnoses. Use of procalcitonin to guide initiation and duration of antibiotic treatment in patients with ARIs was effective in reducing antibiotic exposure across settings without an increase in the risk of mortality or treatment failure. Further high-quality trials are needed in critical-care patients.Clinical Infectious Diseases 05/2012; 55(5):651-62. · 9.15 Impact Factor
Article: Procalcitonin algorithms for antibiotic therapy decisions: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials and recommendations for clinical algorithms.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Previous randomized controlled trials suggest that using clinical algorithms based on procalcitonin levels, a marker of bacterial infections, results in reduced antibiotic use without a deleterious effect on clinical outcomes. However, algorithms differed among trials and were embedded primarily within the European health care setting. Herein, we summarize the design, efficacy, and safety of previous randomized controlled trials and propose adapted algorithms for US settings. We performed a systematic search and included all 14 randomized controlled trials (N = 4467 patients) that investigated procalcitonin algorithms for antibiotic treatment decisions in adult patients with respiratory tract infections and sepsis from primary care, emergency department (ED), and intensive care unit settings. We found no significant difference in mortality between procalcitonin-treated and control patients overall (odds ratio, 0.91; 95% confidence interval, 0.73-1.14) or in primary care (0.13; 0-6.64), ED (0.95; 0.67-1.36), and intensive care unit (0.89; 0.66-1.20) settings individually. A consistent reduction was observed in antibiotic prescription and/or duration of therapy, mainly owing to lower prescribing rates in low-acuity primary care and ED patients, and shorter duration of therapy in moderate- and high-acuity ED and intensive care unit patients. Measurement of procalcitonin levels for antibiotic decisions in patients with respiratory tract infections and sepsis appears to reduce antibiotic exposure without worsening the mortality rate. We propose specific procalcitonin algorithms for low-, moderate-, and high-acuity patients as a basis for future trials aiming at reducing antibiotic overconsumption.Archives of internal medicine 08/2011; 171(15):1322-31. · 11.46 Impact Factor
Article: Procalcitonin for diagnosis of infection and guide to antibiotic decisions: past, present and future.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: There are a number of limitations to using conventional diagnostic markers for patients with clinical suspicion of infection. As a consequence, unnecessary and prolonged exposure to antimicrobial agents adversely affect patient outcomes, while inappropriate antibiotic therapy increases antibiotic resistance. A growing body of evidence supports the use of procalcitonin (PCT) to improve diagnosis of bacterial infections and to guide antibiotic therapy. For patients with upper and lower respiratory tract infection, post-operative infections and for severe sepsis patients in the intensive care unit, randomized-controlled trials have shown a benefit of using PCT algorithms to guide decisions about initiation and/or discontinuation of antibiotic therapy. For some other types of infections, observational studies have shown promising first results, but further intervention studies are needed before use of PCT in clinical routine can be recommended. The aim of this review is to summarize the current evidence for PCT in different infections and clinical settings, and discuss the reliability of this marker when used with validated diagnostic algorithms.BMC Medicine 09/2011; 9:107. · 6.03 Impact Factor