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Balkan Med J. 2016 Nov;33(6):627-632. Epub 2016 Nov 1.

Intravenous Colistin Use for Multidrug-Resistant Gram-Negative Infections in Pediatric Patients.

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Department of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, Marmara University School of Medicine, İstanbul, Turkey.



The emergence of infections due to multidrug-resistant Gram-negative bacilli (MDR-GNB) has led to the resurrection of colistin use. The data on colistin use and drug-related adverse effects in children are scarce.


In this study, we aimed to evaluate the clinical efficacy and safety of colistin use in critically ill pediatric patients.


This study has a retrospective study design.


Sixty-one critically ill children were identified through the department's patient files archive during the period from January 2011 to November 2014.


Twenty-nine females and thirty-two males with a mean±standard deviation (SD) age of 61±9 months (range 0-216, median 12 months) received IV colistin due to MDR-GNB infections. Bacteremia (n=23, 37.7%) was the leading diagnosis, followed by pneumonia (n=19, 31%), clinical sepsis (n=7, 11.4%), wound infection (n=6, 9.8%), urinary tract infection (n=5, 8.1%) and meningitis (n=1, 1.6%). All of the isolates were resistant to carbapenems; however, all were susceptible to colistin. The isolated microorganisms in decreasing order of frequency were: Acinetobacter baumanni (n=27, 44.2%), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (n=17, 27.8%), Klebsiella pneumoniae (n=6, 9.8%), K. pneumoniae and Stenotrophomonas maltophilia (n=1, 1.6%), K. pneumoniae and A. baumanni (n=1, 1.6%), K. oxytoca (n=1, 1.6%) and Enterobacter cloacae (n=1, 1.6%). In seven patients, no microorganisms were detected; however, five of these patients were colonized by carbapenem-resistant K. pneumoniae. The mean duration of colistin therapy was 12 days (range 3-45). Colistin was administered concomitantly with one of the following antibiotics: carbapenem (n=50, %82), ampicillin-sulbactam (n=5, 8%), quinolones (n=5, 8%), rifampicin (n=1, 1.6%). Carbapenem was the most frequently used antibiotic. Nephrotoxicity was observed in only 1 patient, and we did not observe neurotoxicity in this study. All the patients received intravenous colistin (colisthimethate) at a dosage of 5 mg/kg daily by dividing it in three equal doses. Seven (11.4%) patients died during the study period.


Colistin appears to be a safe and efficacious drug for treating MDR-GNB infections in children.


Colistin; children; multidrug-resistant gram-negative infections

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