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Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis. 2011 Jul;70(3):367-72. doi: 10.1016/j.diagmicrobio.2011.03.009.

The effects of group 1 versus group 2 carbapenems on imipenem-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa: an ecological study.

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Division of Epidemiology, Tel-Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, Tel-Aviv 64239, Israel.


Use of the group 2 carbapenems, imipenem and meropenem, may lead to emergence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa resistance. The group 1 carbapenem ertapenem has limited activity against P. aeruginosa and is not associated with imipenem-resistant P. aeruginosa (IMP-R PA) in vitro. This retrospective, group-level, longitudinal study collected patient, antibiotic use, and resistance data from 2001 to 2005 using a hospital database containing information on 9 medical wards. A longitudinal data time series analysis was done to evaluate the association between carbapenem use (defined daily doses, or DDDs) and IMP-R PA. A total of 139 185 patient admissions were included, with 541 150 antibiotics DDDs prescribed: 4637 DDDs of group 2 carbapenems and 2130 DDDs of ertapenem. A total of 779 IMP-R PA were isolated (5.6 cases/1000 admissions). Univariate analysis found a higher incidence of IMP-R PA with group 2 carbapenems (P < 0.001), aminoglycosides (P = 0.034), and penicillins (P = 0.05), but not with ertapenem. Multivariate analysis showed a yearly increase in incidence of IMP-R-PA (3.8%, P < 0.001). Group 2 carbapenem use was highly associated with IMP-R PA, with a 20% increase in incidence (P = 0.0014) for each 100 DDDs. Group 2 carbapenem use tended to be associated with an increased proportion of IMP-R PA (P = 0.0625) in multivariate analysis. Ertapenem was not associated with IMP-R PA. These data would support preferentially prescribing ertapenem rather than group 2 carbapenems where clinically appropriate.

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