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Scand J Infect Dis. 1993;25(1):43-50.

Failure of clindamycin to influence the course of severe oromucositis associated with streptococcal bacteraemia in allogeneic bone marrow transplant recipients.

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Department of Haematology, University Hospital, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


33 consecutive allogeneic bone marrow transplant recipients who were likely to develop streptococcal bacteraemia were treated for 5 days with clindamycin (900 mg i.v. t.d.s) and ceftazidime (2 g t.d.s.) for the initial management of fever associated with severe oral mucositis. Bacteraemia due to 'viridans' streptococci was encountered in 23 cases (70%) as mucositis progressed to peak severity and occurred a day before fever in 8 cases. At the end of treatment with clindamycin only 2 patients had defervesced although the streptococci were successfully eradicated. C-reactive protein (CRP) levels continued to rise in 18 cases and declined by more than 10% in only 7 cases. Severe oromucositis rather than infection appeared to induce an acute phase response with fever suggesting bacteraemia due to 'viridans' streptococci to have been a consequence of mucosal damage. Indeed, oromucositis was the only primary focus of inflammation in 22 patients and only after its resolution did both fever and CRP levels diminish. By then, patients had also begun to recover from granulocytopenia. These data indicate that rather than including a specific antimicrobial like clindamycin in an empirical regimen, it would be more beneficial to evolve strategies that minimise mucosal damage in this patient population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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