Does vancomycin have a future in the treatment of skin infections?

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Does vancomycin have a future in the treatment of skin infections?

Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2014 Apr;27(2):146-54

Authors: O'Brien DJ, Gould IM

Abstract
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Despite concerns regarding efficacy and tolerability, vancomycin continues to be the standard treatment for skin and soft tissue infections (SSTIs) when β-lactam antimicrobials cannot be used. This review sought to establish the role of both old and new alternatives to vancomycin. Methods for achieving optimization of vancomycin therapy are also explored.
RECENT FINDINGS: Several meta-analyses have demonstrated poorer clinical outcomes when the vancomycin minimum inhibitory concentration approaches the breakpoint of 2 μg/ml. Higher doses should be utilized to optimize pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics when higher volumes of distribution occur (e.g. sepsis). Newer agents with established noninferiority to vancomycin include the oxazolidinones linezolid and tedizolid, the lipopeptide daptomycin, the anti-meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus cephalosporin ceftaroline and the glycylcycline tigecycline. Linezolid is thus far the only agent that has been shown to be associated with better clinical and microbiological cure rates. Ceftaroline and tigecycline are broad-spectrum agents best reserved for polymicrobial infections (e.g. diabetic foot infections).
SUMMARY: When vancomycin is used for the treatment of SSTIs, maximizing the dose should be performed to improve efficacy. Cost is often the main limiting factor with regard to the newer agents, but their suitability for outpatient antimicrobial therapy may counteract this.

PMID: 24526063 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]