Randomized Control Trial Comparing Oral Amoxicillin-clavulanate and Ofloxacin With Intravenous Ceftriaxone and Amikacin as Outpatient Therapy in Pediatric Low-risk Febrile Neutropenia

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BackgroundOutpatient oral therapy is infrequently used in pediatric low-risk febrile neutropenia (LRFN) as there is insufficient data regarding its equivalence as compared with parenteral therapy.MethodsThis is a single institutional, randomized control trial in pediatric LRFN aged 2 to 15 years, in which 123 episodes in 88 patients were randomized to outpatient oral ofloxacin 7.5 mg/kg 12 hourly and amoxycillin-clavulanate 12.5 mg/kg 8 hourly or outpatient intravenous (IV) ceftriaxone 75 mg/kg and amikacin 15 mg/kg once daily after blood cultures.ResultsOut of 119 evaluable episodes, one-third were leukemia patients in maintenance and rest were solid tumors. Success was achieved in 55/61 (90.16%) and 54/58 (93.1%) in oral and IV arms, respectively, (P=0.56). There were 3 hospitalizations but no mortality. Median days to resolution of fever, absolute neutrophil count >500/mm3 and antibiotic use were 3, 5, and 6 days in both arms. There were 5 blood culture isolates (3 gram-positive and 2 gram-negative bacteria). Failure of outpatient therapy was associated with perianal infections, bacteremia, febrile neutropenia onset before day 9 of chemotherapy in solid tumors and Vincristine, actinomycin-D, and cyclophosphamide chemotherapy for rhabdomyosarcoma. All gram-positive isolates were successes, whereas both gram-negative isolates were failures. Diarrhea in IV arm and Vincristine, actinomycin-D, and cyclophosphamide chemotherapy in the oral arm predicted failure in subgroup analysis.ConclusionsOutpatient therapy is efficacious and safe in pediatric LRFN. There was no difference in outcome in oral versus IV outpatient therapy. Amoxycillin-clavulanate and ofloxacin may be the oral regimen of choice.

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