Antibiotics for the critically ill: more than just selecting appropriate initial therapy

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11 Scopus citations


Critically ill patients with infection provide a number of challenges to clinicians in terms of optimizing their antimicrobial treatment. Of foremost importance, initial antibiotic treatment should be selected as to provide coverage for the causative pathogens. However, the administration of those antibiotics (dosing, interval of administration, duration of infusion, route of administration) should be prescribed in a manner to ensure optimal drug delivery to the site of infection. This is a challenge given the characteristics of many infected critically ill patients (shock, elevated cardiac output in the resuscitated state, supranormal creatinine clearance, increased volume of distribution). Intensive care unit practitioners should utilize treatment strategies that strive to deliver antibiotics in an individualized manner aimed at attaining desired pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic targets. The goal of such a treatment strategy is to maximize the likelihood of curing the infection and allowing the critically ill patient the best opportunity for recovery. Effective implementation of antimicrobial optimization delivery strategies will likely require a multi-disciplinary approach including intensivists, pharmacists, and infectious disease specialists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)146
Number of pages1
JournalCritical care (London, England)
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2013


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