A Randomized Controlled Comparison of Azithromycin and Ofloxacin for Treatment of Multidrug-Resistant or Nalidixic Acid-Resistant Enteric Fever
Chinh NT., Parry CM., Ly NT., Ha HD., Thong MX., Diep TS., Wain J., White NJ., Farrar JJ.
<jats:title>ABSTRACT</jats:title> <jats:p>To examine the efficacy and safety of short courses of azithromycin and ofloxacin for treating multidrug-resistant (MDR, i.e., resistant to chloramphenicol, ampicillin, and cotrimoxazole) and nalidixic acid-resistant enteric fever, azithromycin (1 g once daily for 5 days at 20 mg/kg/day) and ofloxacin (200 mg orally twice a day for 5 days at 8 mg/kg/day) were compared in an open randomized study in adults admitted to a hospital with uncomplicated enteric fever. A total of 88 blood culture-confirmed patients were enrolled in the study (86 with<jats:italic>Salmonella enterica</jats:italic> serovar Typhi and 2 with <jats:italic>S. enterica</jats:italic> serovar Paratyphi A). Of these, 44 received azithromycin and 44 ofloxacin. A total of 68 of 87 (78%) isolates were MDR serovar Typhi, and 46 of 87 (53%) were nalidixic acid resistant. The MIC<jats:sub>90</jats:sub> (range) of azithromycin was 8 (4 to 16) μg/ml for the isolates. The MIC<jats:sub>90</jats:sub> (range) of ofloxacin for the nalidixic acid-sensitive isolates was 0.03 (0.015 to 0.06) μg/ml and for the nalidixic acid-resistant isolates it was 0.5 (0.25 to 1.0) μg/ml. There was no significant difference in the overall clinical cure rate with ofloxacin and azithromycin (38 of 44 [86.4%] versus 42 of 44 [95.5%]; <jats:italic>P</jats:italic> = 0.27) or in the patients infected with nalidixic acid-resistant typhoid (17 of 21 [81.0%] versus 24 of 25 [96.0%]; <jats:italic>P</jats:italic> = 0.16). However, patients with nalidixic acid-resistant typhoid treated with ofloxacin had a longer fever clearance time compared with those treated with azithromycin (174 [60 to 264] versus 135 [72 to 186] h;<jats:italic>P</jats:italic> = 0.004) and had positive fecal cultures after the end of treatment (7 of 17 [41%] versus 0 of 19 [0%];<jats:italic>P</jats:italic> = 0.002). Both antibiotics were well tolerated. A 5-day course of azithromycin was effective for the treatment of enteric fever due to MDR and nalidixic-acid-resistant serovar Typhi, whereas the ofloxacin regimen chosen was less satisfactory for these strains.</jats:p>