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Prescribing habits of general practitioners in choosing an empirical antibiotic regimen for lower respiratory tract infections in adults in Sicily



Prescribing habits of general practitioners in choosing an empirical antibiotic regimen for lower respiratory tract infections in adults in Sicily



Pharmacological Research 40(1): 47-52



The survey was carried out, between September 1995 and May 1996, in order to describe the prescriptive behaviour among Sicilian general practitioners (GPs) in choosing an empirical antibiotic regimen for LRTIs in adult patients and begin an educational process which involves the same GPs in decisions regarding their prescriptions and in performing local guidelines. Each practitioner filled out a questionnaire for each therapeutic intervention which ended with an antibiotic prescription. The questionnaire also enquired into the patient's characteristics, diseases to be treated and drug prescription. Doctors were asked to give an opinion about the severity assessment of the infectious disease before choosing the antibiotic treatment, in order to evaluate the prescriptive behaviour of physicians related to the patient's symptoms. Of all Sicilian GPs approached, 76 physicians from 25 Sicilian towns, with a patient population of 96,630, agreed to participate. The GPs used 49 different molecules and six different associations of two antibiotics. The most frequently used antibacterial agents were cephalosporins (55.0%). Penicillins (11.7%), fluoroquinolones (11. 4%), macrolides (10.1%) and combinations of penicillins with beta-lactamase inhibitors (7.9%), together, represented 41.1% of the remaining antibiotic prescriptions. The choice of the route of administration was significantly influenced by age of the patients, by symptoms and signs of the disease and by the presence of concurrent diseases rather than by bacteria suspected of causing the disease. The rather marked variation in antibiotic prescribing pattern for LRTIs among Sicilian GPs reflects lack of availability or knowledge of any local or national guidelines about the management of these diseases.

Accession: 011189899

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 10378990

DOI: 10.1006/phrs.1998.0484

Download PDF Full Text: Prescribing habits of general practitioners in choosing an empirical antibiotic regimen for lower respiratory tract infections in adults in Sicily



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