Document Detail

Re-evaluation of a randomized controlled trial of antibiotics for minor respiratory illness in general practice.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11356728     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: A systematic review examining the efficacy of antibiotics in acute respiratory illness concluded that antibiotics are of little benefit. However, that review was based on analysis of only six randomized controlled trials, one of which was excluded because its analysis included patients with multiple episodes of illness; treatment group, either antibiotic or placebo, might have confounded the likelihood of suffering a subsequent episode of illness. METHODS: This previously excluded randomized controlled trial of 301 patients with symptoms of minor respiratory illness was re-analysed to examine the efficacy of antibiotic versus placebo in terms of resolution of symptoms, most particularly cough. RESULTS: Antibiotic had no impact on the resolution of symptoms of cough at 1 and 2 weeks, respectively; adjusted odds ratio 1.2 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.7--2.1] and 0.8 (95% CI 0.4--1.6). In those 220 (73%) individuals who suffered a cough, 48 (44%) and 19 (17%) of patients taking placebo were still coughing after 1 and 2 weeks, respectively. CONCLUSION: It appears that an antibiotic is likely to have, at best, a marginal impact on resolution of symptoms for most patients with minor respiratory illness in the community.
T Fahey; J Howie
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Clinical Trial; Journal Article; Randomized Controlled Trial    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Family practice     Volume:  18     ISSN:  0263-2136     ISO Abbreviation:  Fam Pract     Publication Date:  2001 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-05-17     Completed Date:  2001-07-26     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8500875     Medline TA:  Fam Pract     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  246-8     Citation Subset:  IM    
Division of Primary Health Care, University of Bristol, Canynge Hall, Whiteladies Road, Bristol BS8 2PR, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
Confounding Factors (Epidemiology)
Cough / drug therapy*
Demeclocycline / therapeutic use*
Middle Aged
Respiratory Tract Infections / drug therapy*
Rhinitis / drug therapy*
Smoking / adverse effects
Time Factors
Treatment Outcome
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Anti-Bacterial Agents; 127-33-3/Demeclocycline

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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