Selective decontamination of the digestive tract: to stimulate or stifle?

Bonten, Marc J. M.; Brun-Buisson, Christian; Weinstein, Robert A.
May 2003
Intensive Care Medicine;May2003, Vol. 29 Issue 5, p672
Academic Journal
The article presents information on selective decontamination of the digestive tract. Since its introduction as a prophylactic strategy for intensive care unit (ICU) patients 20 years ago, selective decontamination of the digestive tract (SDD) has driven scientific opinions towards extremes. Although intense scrutiny often stimulates discovery, at times polarization can stifle progress. For 20 years researchers have been unable to demonstrate a significant reduction in patients' mortality rates in individual studies. Antibiotic resistance is an emerging global problem, driven in large part by antibiotic use. Rational and restrictive use of antibiotics, limitation of cross-infections, and prevention of device-associated infections are the tools that we have for controlling resistance.


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