Levofloxacin for the treatment of Mycoplasma pneumoniae-associated meningoencephalitis in childhood

Susanna Esposito, Claudia Tagliabue, Samantha Bosis, Nicola Principi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

It has long been postulated that Mycoplasma pneumoniae plays a causative role in the development of neurological syndromes and this has recently been confirmed by highly sensitive and specific molecular diagnostic techniques for identifying infection due to this pathogen. Encephalitis and meningoencephalitis are the most frequent M. pneumoniae-associated neurological manifestations. Macrolides are considered the antibiotics of choice for treatment of paediatric M. pneumoniae infection, but the increase in macrolide minimal inhibitory concentrations of a substantial percentage of M. pneumoniae strains and the poor penetration of macrolides into cerebrospinal fluid suggest that drugs other than macrolides should be evaluated. Here we describe five paediatric cases of M. pneumoniae-associated meningoencephalitis in which 14 days of intravenous (i.v.) administration of levofloxacin (25 mg/kg/day in two divided doses) led to the disappearance of neurological signs and symptoms, with a good safety profile. Although further studies are needed to demonstrate whether or not M. pneumoniae-associated meningoencephalitis should always be treated with antimicrobials, what the drug of choice is, how long therapy should be administered and whether supportive therapy is useful, these findings suggest that i.v. levofloxacin should be considered for the treatment of paediatric M. pneumoniae-associated meningoencephalitis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)472-475
Number of pages4
JournalInternational Journal of Antimicrobial Agents
Volume37
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2011

Keywords

  • Children
  • Fluoroquinolones
  • Levofloxacin
  • Macrolides
  • Meningoencephalitis
  • Mycoplasma pneumoniae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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