Piperacillin/tazobactam plus tobramycin versus ceftazidime plus tobramycin for the treatment of patients with nosocomial lower respiratory tract infection

Manjari Joshi, Jack Bernstein, Joseph Solomkin, Barbara Ann Wester, Olatunde Kuye, A. Erickson, R. A. Khakoo, B. Suh, J. Wellman, S. Jenkinson, C. Crim, N. Kirmani, D. Smith, D. W. Gump, G. T. Valainis, L. A. Von Behren, W. J. Holloway, B. E. Sieger, M. A. Young, S. J. Goodnight-WhiteP. S. Barie, L. D. Thrupp, T. J. Louie, D. Grimard, A. Y. Martel, S. Lambert, R. Boileau

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An open-label, randomized, comparative, multi-centre study was conducted at 25 centres in the USA and Canada to compare the safety and efficacy of piperacillin/tazobactam plus tobramycin with ceftazidime plus tobramycin in patients with lower respiratory tract infections. Piperacillin/tazobactam (3 g/375 mg) every 4 h or ceftazidime (2 g) every 8 h were administered iv for a minimum of 5 days. Tobramycin (5 mg/kg/day) given in divided doses every 8 h was administered to all patients. Patients with Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolated from respiratory secretions at baseline were to continue tobramycin for the duration of the study. Tobramycin could be discontinued in other patients after the baseline culture results were known. A total of 300 patients was randomized, 155 into the piperacillin/tazobactam group and 145 into the ceftazidime group. Of these, 136 patients (78 in the piperacillin/tazobactam group and 58 in the ceftazidime group) were considered clinically evaluable. Both groups were comparable for age, sex, duration of treatment and other demographic features. The clinical success rate in evaluable patients was significantly greater (P = 0.006) in the piperacillin/tazobactam treatment group (58/78; 74%) than in the ceftazidime group (29/58; 50%). Eradication of the baseline pathogen was significa ntly greater (P = 0.003) in the piperacillin/tazobactam group (66%) than in the ceftazidime group (38%). The clinical and bacteriological responses of those patients with nosocomial pneumonia were similar to the overall results. Twelve (7.7%) piperacillin/tazobactam-treated patients and 24 (17%) ceftazidime-treated patients died during the study (P = 0.03). Seven of the 24 deaths in the ceftazidime treatment group but only one of the 12 deaths in the piperacillin/tazobactam treatment group were directly related to failure to control infection. The majority of adverse events were thought by the investigator to be attributable to the patients' underlying disease and not drug related. In this study, piperacillin/tazobactam plus tobramycin was shown to be more effective and as safe as ceftazidime plus tobramycin in the treatment of patients with nosocomial LRTI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)389-397
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1999


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