Improvement in the clinical cure rate of outpatient management of pelvic inflammatory disease following a change in therapy

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Objective:In the United Kingdom many genitourinary medicine clinics use oral doxycycline and metronidazole to treat pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). A retrospective case note review of PID treatment at our department in 2000 showed that the clinical cure rate (CCR) was only 55% with oral doxycycline and metronidazole for 2 weeks. We therefore added ceftriaxone 250 mg intramuscularly to the doxycycline and metronidazole for treating PID. We have repeated the review and compared the results with those from 2000.Methods:All patients diagnosed as having PID between 1 July 2002 and 31 December 2002 were identified. These episodes were diagnosed on clinical presentations of pelvic pain, vaginal discharge or bleeding, and cervical motion tenderness on physical examination. The CCR was defined as patients who fully resolved their symptoms and signs during 2 week and 4 week follow up. The results were compared with those from 2000.Results:Women receiving ceftriaxone, doxycycline, and metronidazole had a CCR of 72%. In 2000 the CCR for women receiving only doxycycline and metronidazole was 55%. There were only 8% non-responders in 2002 compared with 18% in 2000. Comparing CCR and non-response rate, in 2002 there was a significant improvement in cure rate, OR 3.01 (95% CI 1.28 to 7.47) p = 0.009. Using an intent to treat analysis and including the defaulters as treatment failures there was still a significant improvement in cure rate, OR 2.03 (95% CI 1.18 to 3.50) p = 0.009.Conclusions:The treatment of PID with ceftriaxone, doxycycline, and metronidazole gave a significantly higher CCR than doxycycline and metronidazole. Our experience would suggest that doxycycline and metronidazole alone is not a suitable regimen for treatment of PID in the United Kingdom.

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