Home, Hospital Antibiotics Offer Similar Results in Cystic Fibrosis

Those treated for exacerbations have similar lung function outcomes regardless of therapy location
By Jeff Muise
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, July 14 (HealthDay News) -- Cystic fibrosis (CF) patients treated with intravenous antibiotics for respiratory exacerbations have similar lung function outcomes whether their therapy is administered at home or in the hospital, according to research published online June 25 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

J. Michael Collaco, M.D., of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and colleagues analyzed data on 1,535 patients from the U.S. Cystic Fibrosis Twin and Sibling Study. The researchers assessed lung function as reflected by the long-term decline in forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) for patients who received intravenous antibiotic administration at home or in the hospital.

The researchers found that FEV1 declined similarly whether the antibiotics were administered at home (mean decline, −3.5 percentage points) or in the hospital (mean decline, −3.3 percentage points). Nor was there a significant difference in the interval between antibiotic courses for home (median 98 days) or hospital (median 119 days). Most lung function improvement reached a plateau after eight to 10 days. Patients who had the greater drops in FEV1 from exacerbations had greater long-term decline even if the treatment resulted in improvement initially.

"Intravenous antibiotic therapy for CF respiratory exacerbations administered in the hospital and in the home was found to be equivalent in terms of long-term FEV1 change and interval between courses of antibiotics. Optimal duration of therapy (seven to 10 days) may be shorter than current practice. Large prospective studies are needed to answer these essential questions for CF respiratory management," the authors write.

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