Respiratory fluoroquinolones for the treatment of community-acquired pneumonia: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Vardakas, Konstantinos Z.; Siempos, Ilias I.; Grammatikos, Alexandros; Athanassa, Zoe; Korbila, Ioanna P.; Falagas, Matthew E.
December 2008
CMAJ: Canadian Medical Association Journal;12/2/2008, Vol. 179 Issue 12, p1269
Academic Journal
Background: We investigated whether the use of respiratory fluoroquinolones was associated with better clinical outcomes compared with the use of macrolides and β- lactams among adults with pneumonia. Methods: We searched PubMed, Current Contents, Scopus, EMBASE, ClinicalTrials.gov and Cochrane with no language restrictions. Two reviewers independently extracted data from published trials that compared fluoroquinolones (levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, gemifloxacin) with macrolides or β-lactams or both. A meta-analysis was performed with the clinical outcomes of mortality, treatment success and adverse outcomes. Results: We included 23 trials in our meta-analysis. There was no difference in mortality among patients who received fluoroquinolones or the comparator antibiotics (OR 0.85, 95% CI 0.65-1.12). Pneumonia resolved in more patients who received fluoroquinolones compared with the comparator antibiotics for the included outcomes in the intention-to-treat population (OR 1.17, 95% CI 1.00-1.36), clinically evaluable population (OR 1.26, 95% CI 1.06-1.50) and the microbiologically assessed population (OR 1.67, 95% CI 1.28-2.20). Fluoroquinolones were more effective than a combination of β-lactam and macrolide (OR 1.39, 95% CI 1.02-1.90). They were also more effective for patients with severe pneumonia (OR 1.84, 95% CI 1.02-3.29), those who required admission to hospital (OR = 1.30, 95% CI 1.04-1.61) and those who required intravenous therapy (OR = 1.44, 15% CI 1.13-1.85). Fluoroquinolones were more effective than β-lactam and macrolide in open-label trials (OR = 1.35, 95% CI 1.08-1.69) but not in blinded randomized controlled trials (OR = 1.13, 95% CI 0.85-1.50).


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