Antibiotics in the first hour: is there new evidence?

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Antibiotics in the first hour: is there new evidence?

Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther. 2020 Aug 17;:

Authors: Dupuis C, Timsit JF

Abstract
INTRODUCTION: International guidelines have recommended for many years to start antimicrobials as early as possible in sepsis and shock. This concept has been challenged by the controversial results of experimental studies and clinical cohorts and resulted in intense debate in the literature. This review aims to summarize the available knowledge on early antimicrobial therapy and to consider perspectives.
AREAS COVERED: First, after a research using MEDLINE, we reviewed the studies that advocated the implementation of early antimicrobial therapy. We then discussed the drawbacks of these studies. Finally, we suggested possible explanations of the benefit and then absence of the prognostic impact of early antimicrobial therapy i.e. confounding factors, irreversibility of the inflammatory process, non-control of the source of the infection, pharmacodynamic considerations and the harmful effect of antimicrobial drugs.
EXPERT OPINION: Sepsis is very heterogeneous. The first antimicrobial therapy should be personalized. The sickest patients should be given early antimicrobial therapy, whereas a "watch and wait process" should be preferred for less severe patients, to allow confirmation of sepsis, identification of pathogens and administration of adequate antimicrobial therapy. We propose steps to personalize the first antimicrobial therapy. New early diagnostic tools will assist the physicians in the future.

PMID: 32799580 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]