Effect of Long-term, Low-Dose Erythromycin on Pulmonary Exacerbations Among Patients With Non-Cystic Fibrosis Bronchiectasis The BLESS Randomized Controlled Trial

Department of Respiratory Medicine, Level 9, Mater Adult Hospital, Raymond Terr, South Brisbane, Queensland 4101, Australia.
JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association (Impact Factor: 35.29). 03/2013; 309(12):1260-7. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2013.2290
Source: PubMed


Macrolide antibiotics such as erythromycin may improve clinical outcomes in non-cystic fibrosis (CF) bronchiectasis, although associated risks of macrolide resistance are poorly defined.
To evaluate the clinical efficacy and antimicrobial resistance cost of low-dose erythromycin given for 12 months to patients with non-CF bronchiectasis with a history of frequent pulmonary exacerbations.
Twelve-month, randomized (1:1), double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of erythromycin in currently nonsmoking, adult patients with non-CF bronchiectasis with a history of 2 or more infective exacerbations in the preceding year. This Australian study was undertaken between October 2008 and December 2011 in a university teaching hospital, with participants also recruited via respiratory physicians at other centers and from public radio advertisements.
Twice-daily erythromycin ethylsuccinate (400 mg) or matching placebo.
The primary outcome was the annualized mean rate of protocol-defined pulmonary exacerbations (PDPEs) per patient. Secondary outcomes included macrolide resistance in commensal oropharyngeal streptococci and lung function.
Six-hundred seventy-nine patients were screened, 117 were randomized (58 placebo, 59 erythromycin), and 107 (91.5%) completed the study. Erythromycin significantly reduced PDPEs both overall (mean, 1.29 [95% CI, 0.93-1.65] vs 1.97 [95% CI, 1.45-2.48] per patient per year; incidence rate ratio [IRR], 0.57 [95% CI, 0.42-0.77]; P = .003), and in the prespecified subgroup with baseline Pseudomonas aeruginosa airway infection (mean difference, 1.32 [95% CI, 0.19-2.46]; P = .02). Erythromycin reduced 24-hour sputum production (median difference, 4.3 g [interquartile range [IQR], 1 to 7.8], P = .01) and attenuated lung function decline (mean absolute difference for change in postbronchodilator forced expiratory volume in the first second of expiration, 2.2 percent predicted [95% CI, 0.1% to 4.3%]; P = .04) compared with placebo. Erythromycin increased the proportion of macrolide-resistant oropharyngeal streptococci (median change, 27.7% [IQR, 0.04% to 41.1%] vs 0.04% [IQR, -1.6% to 1.5%]; difference, 25.5% [IQR,15.0% to 33.7%]; P < .001). CONCLUSION AND RELEVANCE: Among patients with non-CF bronchiectasis, the 12-month use of erythromycin compared with placebo resulted in a modest decrease in the rate of pulmonary exacerbations and an increased rate of macrolide resistance. Identifier: ACTRN12609000578202.

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    • "The inconsistent effects of medications on HRQoL of patients with bronchiectasis may go some way to explaining this finding. Some medications such as colistin and azithromycin are associated with better HRQoL [16,32] whilst no significant improvement in HRQoL was reported for erythromycin [33]. In addition, the composite nature of the MPR value for ‘other respiratory medicines’ may also have masked any relationships between individual medications (e.g. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background We aimed to determine adherence to inhaled antibiotics, other respiratory medicines and airway clearance and to determine the association between adherence to these treatments and health outcomes (pulmonary exacerbations, lung function and Quality of Life Questionnaire-Bronchiectasis [QOL-B]) in bronchiectasis after 12 months. Methods Patients with bronchiectasis prescribed inhaled antibiotics for Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection were recruited into a one-year study. Participants were categorised as “adherent” to medication (medication possession ratio ≥80% using prescription data) or airway clearance (score ≥80% in the Modified Self-Reported Medication-Taking Scale). Pulmonary exacerbations were defined as treatment with a new course of oral or intravenous antibiotics over the one-year study. Spirometry and QOL-B were completed at baseline and 12 months. Associations between adherence to treatment and pulmonary exacerbations, lung function and QOL-B were determined by regression analyses. Results Seventy-five participants were recruited. Thirty-five (53%), 39 (53%) and 31 (41%) participants were adherent to inhaled antibiotics, other respiratory medicines, and airway clearance, respectively. Twelve (16%) participants were adherent to all treatments. Participants who were adherent to inhaled antibiotics had significantly fewer exacerbations compared to non-adherent participants (2.6 vs 4, p = 0.00) and adherence to inhaled antibiotics was independently associated with having fewer pulmonary exacerbations (regression co-efficient = -0.51, 95% CI [-0.81,-0.21], p < 0.001). Adherence to airway clearance was associated with lower QOL-B Treatment Burden (regression co-efficient = -15.46, 95% CI [-26.54, -4.37], p < 0.01) and Respiratory Symptoms domain scores (regression co-efficient = -10.77, 95% CI [-21.45; -0.09], p < 0.05). There were no associations between adherence to other respiratory medicines and any of the outcomes tested. Adherence to treatment was not associated with FEV1 % predicted. Conclusions Treatment adherence is low in bronchiectasis and affects important health outcomes including pulmonary exacerbations. Adherence should be measured as part of bronchiectasis management and future research should evaluate bronchiectasis-specific adherence strategies.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · BMC Pulmonary Medicine
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    • "Wong et al. [19] Serisier et al. [20] Altenburg et al. [21] Méthodologie Multicentrique, randomisée contrôlée, double aveugle, 141 patients Monocentrique randomisée contrôlée, double aveugle, 117 patients Multicentrique, randomisée, contrôlée, double aveugle, 89 patients Intervention Azithromycine, 500 mg 3 fois par semaine Érythromycine, 500 mg/j Azithromycine, 250 "
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    ABSTRACT: Decreased frequency of pulmonary exacerbations, mainly related to immunomodulatory effects of macrolide antibiotics, has been demonstrated in bronchiectasis and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD). Due to its tolerance, azithromycin is the antibiotic of choice for maintenance therapy at the dose of 250 mg per day or 500 mg × 3 per week (for body weight > 55 kg). Maintenance therapy with macrolide could be proposed in selected patients with bronchiectasis or COPD with more than 3 acute exacerbations in the previous year or decreased lung function despite compliance with optimum treatment. The risk of sudden cardiac death with azithromycin is rare and controversial. It should be avoided in patients with a high baseline risk of cardiovascular disease, QT > 450 msec, pulse rate > 100 bpm and potential drug interactions, particularly those known to cause QT prolongation. It is recommended to search for hearing deficit (audiometry) and sputum culture positive for mycobacteria. Patients must also be aware that it can rapidly lead to macrolide resistance in commensal or pathogenic flora. Follow-up evaluation every 3 month can be proposed with medical history (hearing deficit) and electrocardiography. After one year, the treatment should be stopped in the absence of reduction in the frequency of exacerbations.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · La Presse Médicale
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    • "Recent studies have unfolded some promising pharmaceutical drugs on treating PF 37, 38. Ryo et al showed that a newly developed drug, pirfenidone, exerts protective effects on patients with mild-to-severe and/or progressive IPF 39. "
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    ABSTRACT: Pulmonary fibrosis (PF) is a common complication in those interstitial lung diseases patients, which will result in poor prognosis and short survival. Traditional therapeutic methods such as glucocorticoid and cytotoxic drugs are insufficient for treating PF and may cause severe side effects. Recent studies showed that traditional Chinese herbal abstraction such as Tanshinone IIA (TIIA) was displayed significant anti-PF effects in animal models. However, the exact mechanisms underlying the protective effects of TIIA were not fully understood. Here we further investigated the protective effects of TIIA and its mechanisms underlying. PF models of rat were induced by bleomycin (BLM); TIIA was administered subsequently. The PF changes were identified by histopathological analyses. The results showed that BLM resulted in severe PF and alveolar inflammation; together with significant elevation of transforming growth factor-β 1 (TGF-β1). Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE-2) together with angiotensin-(1-7) [ANG-(1-7)] were both greatly reduced after BLM administration. TIIA treatment notably attenuated BLM induced PF and inflammation, decreased expression of TGF-β1 and reversed ACE-2 and ANG-(1-7) production in rat lungs. Thus we may draw the conclusion that TIIA may exert protective effects on BLM induced PF in rats, and the ACE-2/ANG-(1-7) axis may ascribe to those protective effects.
    Preview · Article · Apr 2014 · International journal of medical sciences
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