Author(s): GarnachoMontero J, EscorescaOrtega A, FernndezDelgado E
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Abstract PURPOSE OF REVIEW: An antimicrobial policy consisting of the initial use of wide-spectrum antimicrobials followed by a reassessment of treatment when culture results are available is termed de-escalation therapy. Our aim is to examine the safety and feasibility of antibiotic de-escalation in critically ill patients providing practical tips about how to accomplish this strategy in the critical care setting. RECENT FINDINGS: Numerous studies have assessed the rates of de-escalation therapy (range from 10 to 60\%) in patients with severe sepsis or ventilator-associated pneumonia as well as the factors associated with de-escalation. De-escalation generally refers to a reduction in the spectrum of administered antibiotics through the discontinuation of antibiotics or switching to an agent with a narrower spectrum. Diverse studies have identified the adequacy of initial therapy as a factor independently associated with de-escalation. Negative impact on different outcome measures has not been reported in the observational studies. Two randomized clinical trials have evaluated this strategy in patients with ventilator-associated pneumonia or severe sepsis. These trials alert us about the possibility that this strategy may be linked to a higher rate of reinfections but without an impact on mortality. SUMMARY: Antibiotic de-escalation is a well tolerated management strategy in critically ill patients but unfortunately is not widely adopted.
This article was published in Curr Opin Infect Dis
and referenced in Journal of Antimicrobial Agents