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J Chemother. 2006 Dec;18(6):648-51.

Clinical and microbiological efficacy of colistin therapy alone or in combination as treatment for multidrug resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa diabetic foot infections with or without osteomyelitis.

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  • 1Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Pisana, Pisa, Italy.


We retrospectively evaluated the safety and effectiveness of colistin alone or in combination with other antimicrobials in eight diabetic patients with severe diabetic foot infections due to multidrug resistant (MDR) Pseudomonas aeruginosa, complicated in 4 cases by osteomyelitis. All patients received colistin after other ineffective antimicrobial treatment, when MDR P. aeruginosa strains were isolated by cultural examination and together with a multidisciplinary care approach including revascularization, surgical debridement and adequate offloading. The mean duration of therapy was 72 +/- 52.9 days. Six out of 8 patients (75%) successfully benefited from colistin therapy, while 2 patients failed and/or experienced side effects that led to discontinuation of therapy. Serious adverse events (i.e. acute renal failure and pulmonary edema) were observed in 1 patient. Our data allow us to conclude that colistin, alone or in combination with other antimicrobials, is safe and effective when administered as part of a multidisciplinary approach, to promote healing of diabetic foot infection due to MDR P. aeruginosa.

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