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SYSTEMATIC REVIEW
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 146  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 576-584

A meta-analysis to assess usefulness of procalcitonin-guided antibiotic usage for decision making


1 Department of Pharmacology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Chandigarh, India
2 Department of Medical Microbiology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vikas Gautam
Department of Medical Microbiology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Chandigarh 160 012
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijmr.IJMR_613_15

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Background & objectives: Development of antibacterial resistance and its association with antibiotic overuse makes it necessary to identify a specific and sensitive biomarker for the diagnosis of bacterial infection and guiding antibiotic therapy. Procalcitonin (PCT), as a sepsis biomarker, may play a role in guiding antibiotics treatment in hospital settings. The aim of the current meta-analysis was to analyze the utility of PCT on various outcomes of interest in inpatients. Methods: Different databases were searched for randomized controlled trials comparing PCT-guided therapy with standard therapy in admitted patients with bacterial infections. Twenty six articles were found suitable for full text search and of these, 16 studies were considered finally for data extraction. Results: There were no significant differences found in total mortality [pooled odds ratio (OR) 1.04, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.89-1.22, P=0.63], 28-day mortality (pooled OR 0.97, 95% CI 0.80-1.19, P=0.79), need of Intensive Care Unit admission (OR=0.80, 95% CI 0.59-1.09, P=0.16) and duration of stay in hospital (pooled mean difference −0.01, 95% CI −0.50-0.49, P=0.98) between treatment and control groups. PCT-guided treatment significantly decreased the duration of antibiotic treatment (pooled mean difference −2.79, 95% CI −3.52-−2.06, P<0.00001). Interpretation & conclusions: PCT-guided therapy significantly decreased antibiotics exposure and thus treatment cost. However, the hard endpoints did not demonstrate any significant benefits, possibly due to low power to detect differences and/or the presence of comorbidities.


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