The benefits of long-term systemic antimicrobial therapy in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease, 06/07/2011
Berim I et al. – Long–term antibiotic treatment in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) regimens that are being evaluated include low–dose macrolide therapy, pulsed fluoroquinolone administration and the use of inhaled antibiotics. Although initial results have been promising with significant reductions in exacerbations with these regimens, additional studies are required to identify the appropriate patient and regimen and elucidate the risk–benefit as well as cost effectiveness of long–term antibiotics in COPD.
- Acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (AECOPD) are major contributors to the morbidity and mortality associated with this disease.
- Current approaches that likely reduce chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbations include smoking cessation, influenza and pneumococcal vaccinations, long–acting bronchodilator and inhaled corticosteroid therapy, pulmonary rehabilitation, and mucolytic drugs.
- However, with optimal treatment using all of these modalities, the authors are only able to reduce exacerbations by about 40%.
- A significant proportion of COPD exacerbations are bacterial, therefore long–term antimicrobial therapy could have a role in preventing exacerbations.