Controlled clinical trial of pefloxacin versus imipenem in severe acute pancreatitis

C. Bassi, M. Falconi, G. Talamini, G. Uomo, G. Papaccio, C. Dervenis, R. Salvia, E. B. Minelli, P. Pederzoli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Aims: Antibiotic prophylaxis in severe pancreatitis has recently yielded promising clinical results, with imipenem significantly reducing the incidence of infected necrosis compared with an untreated control group. On the bases of pefloxacin's spectrum of action and pancreatic penetration, we investigated whether such drugs represent a valid alternative to imipenem. Methods: In a multicenter study, 60 patients with severe acute pancreatitis with necrosis affecting at least 50% of the pancreas were randomly allocated to receive intravenous treatment for 2 weeks with pefloxacin, 400 mg twice daily (30 patients), or imipenem, 500 mg three times daily (30 patients), within 120 hours of onset of symptoms. Age, sex, body weight, Ranson and Apache II scores, C-reactive protein, etiology, and time from onset of symptoms to treatment were well matched in the two groups. Results: The incidences of infected necrosis and extrapancreatic infections were 34% and 44%, respectively, in the pefloxacin group and 10% and 20% in the imipenem group. Imipenem proved significantly more effective in prevention of pancreatic infections (P ≤ 0.05). Mortality was not significantly different in the two groups. Conclusions: Despite its theoretical potential, pefloxacin is inferior to imipenem in the prevention of infections associated with severe pancreatitis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1513-1517
Number of pages5
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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