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Pediatr Int. 1999 Apr;41(2):228-32.

Effect of early oral fluoroquinolones in hemorrhagic colitis due to Escherichia coli O157:H7.

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Department of Pediatrics and Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Osaka City General Hospital, Japan.


During the Sakai outbreak of Escherichia coli O157:H7 infection, which was linked to contaminated cafeteria school lunches, there were several treatment modalities with regard to antimicrobial drugs. Patient outcomes among three hospitals with different modalities were compared retrospectively. Hemolytic uremic syndrome did not develop in any of the 15 patients treated with oral fluoroquinolone therapy; however, HUS did develop in three of 15 patients treated with intravenous (i.v.) fosfomycin and in two of 12 patients treated with i.v. cefotaxime and oral fosfomycin. The results indicate that oral fluoroquinolone therapy administered within 3 days of illness is effective in preventing the development of HUS; however, prospective randomized double-blind studies on early antimicrobial therapy of O157 hemorrhagic colitis are necessary. Several antibiotics, including fluoroquinolones, were reported to induce the production or release of Shiga-like toxins (STX) from E. coli O157:H7 in vitro. Although patients were examined for fecal STX, no STX were detected in the stools of patients treated with oral fluoroquinolones. In fact, treatment with fluoroquinolones for 5 days eradicated E. coli O157 in all patients.

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