Clinical experience in the management of community-acquired pneumonia: lessons from the use of fluoroquinolones

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Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. The treatment of CAP has been complicated by several factors, including the expanding spectrum of causative organisms and the rising prevalence of antibiotic resistance among respiratory pathogens. Initial antimicrobial treatment for patients with CAP is usually selected empirically and should provide appropriate coverage against the most common causative organisms, including resistant strains. Respiratory fluoroquinolones, such as levofloxacin, are the only antimicrobials that are highly active against the pathogens most frequently implicated in CAP, including macrolide-resistant and penicillin-resistant pneumococci, Haemophilus influenzae, Legionella spp., and atypical agents. This paper reviews recent studies involving adult patients with CAP that suggest that levofloxacin, as compared with other conventional antibiotic treatments, may be associated with better clinical outcomes.

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