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J Antimicrob Chemother. 2000 Aug;46 Suppl A:59-62.

Ecological antibiotic policy.

Author information

1
Department of Clinical Microbiology, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen, Juliane Maries Vej 22, DK-2100 Copenhagen 0, Denmark.

Abstract

Development of resistance to antibiotics is a major problem worldwide. The normal oropharyngeal flora, the intestinal flora and the skin flora play important roles in this development. Within a few days after the onset of antibiotic therapy, resistant Escherichia coli, Haemophilus influenzae and Staphylococcus epidermidis can be detected in the normal flora of volunteers or patients. Horizontal spread of the resistance genes to other species, e.g. SALMONELLA: spp., Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pneumoniae, occurs by conjugation or transformation. An ecologically sound antibiotic policy favours the use of antibiotics with little or no impact on the normal flora. Prodrug antibiotics which are not active against the bacteria in the mouth and the intestine (before absorption) and which are not excreted to a significant degree via the intestine, saliva or skin are therefore preferred. Prodrugs such as pivampicillin, bacampicillin, pivmecillinam and cefuroxime axetil are favourable from an ecological point of view. Experience from Scandinavia supports this, since resistance to mecillinam after 20 years of use is low (about 5%) and stable.

PMID:
10969054

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