Levofloxacin for NIH Category II Chronic Bacterial Prostatitis: A Real-Life Study

Vittorio Magri, Gianpaolo Perletti, Tommaso Cai, Konstantinos Stamatiou, Alberto Trinchieri, Emanuele Montanari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Mounting worldwide resistance trends make the use of fluoroquinolone (FQ) antibacterial agents increasingly difficult. This is felt more acutely in the case of urogenital infections, which are mainly caused by Gram-negative pathogens. For years, levofloxacin and other FQs have been the first-line drugs for treating National Institutes of Health (NIH) category II chronic bacteria prostatitis (CBP). Eradication rates achieved by levofloxacin in the frame of randomized trials vary greatly, ranging between 71 and 86%. Objectives: This was a retrospective observational study to investigate the efficacy of levofloxacin against CBP in a real-life setting (urological outpatient wards). Methods: A database including the clinical records of >2,500 CBP patients was reviewed. Patients were selected based on strict inclusion criteria. They were treated for 4 weeks with 500 mg levofloxacin per day, alone or combined with other antibacterials. Besides standard urological procedures including the 4-glass test for pathogen isolation, international symptom questionnaires (the NIH Chronic Prostatitis Symptom Index [NIH-CPSI] and International Prostate Symptom Score [IPSS]) were administered. Results: Pathogen eradication was achieved in 79% of the cases treated with levofloxacin as a single agent and 87.8% of patients who received a combination of levofloxacin and azithromycin. The 11% increase in the eradication rate in the latter group is statistically significant. In addition, the levofloxacin-azithromycin combination caused a significant decrease in prostate volume and significantly increased the bladder-voided volume. IPSS and NIH-CPSI values and the urinary peak flow rate decreased to a similar extent in both treatment groups. No adverse effects were reported by patients belonging to either treatment group. Conclusion: Levofloxacin retained its therapeutic efficacy in patients assessed in a real-life setting, and high eradication rates were attained when it was administered as a single agent. A combination of an FQ with azithromycin induced a significant improvement of eradication rates. This strategy may be an interesting option in both first-referral and relapsing cases, although caution should be exercised when patients are at risk of developing arrhythmias, tendinitis, or other adverse effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-16
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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