Evidence Associated with the Use of Oxazolidinones for the Treatment of Skin and Skin Structure Infections: A Retrospective Study

João Gonçalves-Pereira, Filipe Froes, Fernanda Paula Santos, Helena Sofia Antão, João Paulo Guimarães


Introduction: Skin and skin structure infections are an increasing cause of hospitalization. Although mortality is relatively low, skin and skin structure infections are associated with prolonged hospital length of stay and high costs. Oxazolidinones have been suggested as a tool to treat infected patients in the ambulatory setting in order to decrease hospital length of stay. We wanted to address the evidence associated with the use of oxazolidinones in the treatment of skin and skin structure infections.
Material and Methods: In this observational retrospective study we analyzed the anonymized diagnosis related group coded information from the Portuguese database for hospital admissions, that included all adult patients with a diagnosis of oxazolidinone use and a SSSI, discharged between 2010 and 2015.
Results: During the study period, a total of 5518 patients had a diagnosis of oxazolidinone treatment. We selected 483 of those who were also diagnosed with a skin and skin structure infections. Their mean age was 64.9 years and 62.7% were male. The median hospital length of stay was 27 days (Inter quartile range 13 – 56) and the mortality rate was 12.6%. The prevalence of secondary anemia and of thrombocytopenia in the whole group treated with oxazolidinones was 2.5% and 3%, respectively.
Discussion: Despite the high bioavailability of oxazolidinones, we were not able to find evidence that its use was associated with a decrease of mortality or hospital length of stay (due to early discharge) of patients with skin and skin structure infections.
Conclusion: In this study we were not able to find evidence that oxazolidinones had any clinically significant benefit. A structured approach, including antibiotics with favorable pharmacokinetic and safety profile as well as a carefully planned ambulatory follow up may be needed.


Hospitalization; Oxazolidinones; Skin Diseases, Bacterial/drug therapy; Soft Tissue Infections/drug therapy

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