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Revista chilena de infectología

versión impresa ISSN 0716-1018

Resumen

WOLFF, Marcelo; QUINTANILLA, Raúl; CARRASCO, Juan Pablo  y  CIFUENTES, Marcela. Critical review of a suboptimal antibiotic, frequently overused and inappropriately dosed: Vancomycin. Rev. chil. infectol. [online]. 2019, vol.36, n.6, pp.687-697. ISSN 0716-1018.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0716-10182019000600687.

Background:

Vancomycin, standard parenteral therapy for Gram positive cocci resistant to traditional beta-lactam antibiotics (Staphylococcus aureus and coagulase negative staphylococci [CNS]) and Enterococcus spp, frequent agents of nosocomial infections, is extensively used empirically in that setting. However, its pharmacological weakness, narrow therapeutic margin and poorly predictable pharmacokinetics, make it a suboptimal drug according to contemporary criteria. Vancomycin is over utilized due to both, overestimation of bacterial infections and, in genuine cases, overestimation of the etiological role of these resistant cocci, either nosocomially or community acquired. New threats narrow further its therapeutic role: poorer outcomes in infections with higher vancomycin MIC and resistance by enterococci. It is frequently given at inappropriate dosage and intervals, failing to: give loading dose when recommended, measure blood levels, adjust dosing to changing renal function and continued use when not necessary. Newer anti staphylococcal drugs haven't replaced completely the role of vancomycin, which maintains its usefulness in contemporary medicine.

Conclusion:

Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of vancomycin, current epidemiology and microbiology of infections for which it may be indicated, as well as the proper administration and monitoring, together with a prudent and selective indication will allow to preserve its present and future utility in the changing medical scenario.

Palabras clave : Vancomycin; methicillin resistant S. aureus; antibiotic stewardship; misuse of antibiotics.

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