Antibiotics and antiseptics for venous leg ulcers
ABSTRACT Venous leg ulcers are a type of chronic wound affecting up to 1% of adults in developed countries at some point during their life. Many of these wounds are colonised by bacteria or show signs of clinical infection. The presence of infection may delay ulcer healing. There are two main strategies used to prevent and treat clinical infection in venous leg ulcers: systemic antibiotics and topical antibiotics or antiseptics.
The objective of the review is to determine the effects of systemic antibiotics and topical antibiotics and antiseptics on the healing of venous ulcers.
The following databases were searched up to October 2007: the Cochrane Wounds Group Specialised Register; the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials; MEDLINE; EMBASE; and CINAHL. In addition, the reference lists of included studies and relevant review articles were examined.
Randomised controlled trials recruiting people with venous leg ulceration that evaluated at least one systemic antibiotic, topical antibiotic or topical antiseptic and reported an objective assessment of wound healing (e.g. time to complete healing, frequency of complete healing, change in ulcer surface area) were eligible for inclusion. Selection decisions were made by three authors working independently.
Information on the characteristics of participants, interventions and outcomes were recorded on a standardised data extraction form. In addition, aspects of trial methods were extracted, including methods of randomisation and allocation concealment, use of blinded outcome assessment, intention-to-treat analysis, reporting of patient follow-up and study group comparability at baseline. Data extraction and validity assessment were conducted by one author and checked by a second.
Twenty two trials were identified of different antibiotics and antiseptics, including systemic antibiotics (5 trials). The remainder were topical preparations: cadexomer iodine (10 trials); povidone iodine (2 trials); peroxide-based preparations (3 trials); ethacridine lactate (1 trial); and mupirocin (1 trial). For the systemic antibiotics, the only comparison where a statistically significant between-group difference was detected was that in favour of the antihelminthic levamisole when compared with placebo. This trial, in common with the other evaluations of systemic antibiotics, was small and so the observed effect could have occurred by chance. In terms of topical preparations, there is some evidence to suggest that cadexomer iodine generates higher healing rates than standard care. One study showed a statistically significant result in favour of cadexomer iodine when compared with standard care (not involving compression) in terms of frequency of complete healing at six weeks (RR 2.29, 95% CI 1.10 to 4.74). The intervention regimen used was intensive, involving daily dressing changes, and so these findings may not be generalisable to most everyday clinical settings. When cadexomer iodine was compared with standard care with all patients receiving compression, the pooled estimate from two trials for frequency of complete healing at 4 to 6 weeks indicated significantly higher healing rates for cadexomer iodine (RR 6.72, 95% CI 1.56 to 28.95). Surrogate healing outcomes such as change in ulcer surface area and daily or weekly healing rate showed favourable results for cadexomer iodine, peroxide-based preparations and ethacridine lactate in some studies. These surrogate outcomes may not be valid proxies for complete healing of the wound. Most of the trials were small and many had methodological problems such as poor baseline comparability between groups, failure to use (or report) true randomisation, adequate allocation concealment, blinded outcome assessment and analysis by intention-to-treat.
At present, there is no existing evidence to support the routine use of systemic antibiotics to promote healing in venous leg ulcers. However, the lack of reliable evidence means that it is not possible to recommend the discontinuation of any of the agents reviewed. In terms of topical preparations, there is some evidence to support the use of cadexomer iodine. Further good quality research is required before definitive conclusions can be made about the effectiveness of systemic antibiotics and topical preparations such as povidone iodine, peroxide-based preparations, ethacridine lactate and mupirocin in healing venous leg ulceration. In light of the increasing problem of bacterial resistance to antibiotics, current prescribing guidelines recommend that antibacterial preparations should only be used in cases of defined infection and not for bacterial colonisation.
SourceAvailable from: Andrea Tricco[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Numerous, often multi-faceted regimens are available for treating complex wounds, yet the evidence of these interventions is recondite across the literature. We aimed to identify effective interventions to treat complex wounds through an overview of systematic reviews. MEDLINE (OVID interface, 1946 until October 26, 2012), EMBASE (OVID interface, 1947 until October 26, 2012), and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (Issue 10 of 12, 2012) were searched on October 26, 2012. Systematic reviews that examined adults receiving care for their complex wounds were included. Two reviewers independently screened the literature, abstracted data, and assessed study quality using the Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR) tool. Overall, 99 systematic reviews were included after screening 6,200 titles and abstracts and 422 full-texts; 54 were systematic reviews with a meta-analysis (including data on over 54,000 patients) and 45 were systematic reviews without a meta-analysis. Overall, 44% of included reviews were rated as being of high quality (AMSTAR score ≥8). Based on data from systematic reviews including a meta-analysis with an AMSTAR score ≥8, promising interventions for complex wounds were identified. These included bandages or stockings (multi-layer, high compression) and wound cleansing for venous leg ulcers; four-layer bandages for mixed arterial/venous leg ulcers; biologics, ultrasound, and hydrogel dressings for diabetic leg/foot ulcers; hydrocolloid dressings, electrotherapy, air-fluidized beds, and alternate foam mattresses for pressure ulcers; and silver dressings and ultrasound for unspecified mixed complex wounds. For surgical wound infections, topical negative pressure and vacuum-assisted closure were promising interventions, but this was based on evidence from moderate to low quality systematic reviews. Numerous interventions can be utilized for patients with varying types of complex wounds, yet few treatments were consistently effective across all outcomes throughout the literature. Clinicians and patients can use our results to tailor effective treatment according to type of complex wound. Network meta-analysis will be of benefit to decision-makers, as it will permit multiple treatment comparisons and ranking of the effectiveness of all interventions. Please see related article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12916-015-0326-3.BMC Medicine 04/2015; 13:89. DOI:10.1186/s12916-015-0288-5 · 7.28 Impact Factor
Article: Systemic therapy for leg ulcers10/2014; 5(4):539-40. DOI:10.4103/2229-5178.142565
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ABSTRACT: Varicose ulcers represent a major issue for both patients and health services being associated with impaired quality of patient's life and loss of work productivity. Many of these chronic wounds are associated with infections. The study group has included 662 bacterial strains isolated from secretions of the infected varicose ulcers of patients treated in the Dermatology department from the Clinical County Emergency Hospital Braşov between 2007 and 2008. The objective of our study has consisted in the evaluation of etiological spectrum of varicose infections and resistance to antibiotics of implicated microbes. The most frequent involved germ was Staphylococcus aureus (58.3%), followed by Enterobacter spp (14.8%) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (9.5%). Lower frequencies of isolation were registered for Escherichia coli, Proteus mirabilis, Acinetobacter spp and Klebsiella spp. Various levels of bacterial resistance were registered for the tested antibiotics. .