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Effect of Levofloxacin Prophylaxis on Bacteremia in Children With Acute Leukemia or Undergoing Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: A Randomized Clinical Trial.

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2018 Sep 11

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<p><strong>Importance: </strong>Bacteremia causes considerable morbidity among children with acute leukemia and those undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). There are limited data on the effect of antibiotic prophylaxis in children.</p>

<p><strong>Objective: </strong>To determine the efficacy and risks of levofloxacin prophylaxis in children receiving intensive chemotherapy for acute leukemia or undergoing HSCT.</p>

<p><strong>Design, Setting, and Participants: </strong>In this multicenter, open-label, randomized trial, patients (6 months-21 years) receiving intensive chemotherapy were enrolled (September 2011-April 2016) in 2 separate groups-acute leukemia, consisting of acute myeloid leukemia or relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and HSCT recipients-at 76 centers in the United States and Canada, with follow-up completed September 2017.</p>

<p><strong>Interventions: </strong>Patients with acute leukemia were randomized to receive levofloxacin prophylaxis for 2 consecutive cycles of chemotherapy (n = 100) or no prophylaxis (n = 100). Those undergoing HSCT were randomized to receive levofloxacin prophylaxis during 1 HSCT procedure (n = 210) or no prophylaxis (n = 214).</p>

<p><strong>Main Outcomes and Measures: </strong>The primary outcome was the occurrence of bacteremia during 2 chemotherapy cycles (acute leukemia) or 1 transplant procedure (HSCT). Secondary outcomes included fever and neutropenia, severe infection, invasive fungal disease, Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea, and musculoskeletal toxic effects.</p>

<p><strong>Results: </strong>A total of 624 patients, 200 with acute leukemia (median [interquartile range {IQR}] age, 11 years [6-15 years]; 46% female) and 424 undergoing HSCT (median [IQR] age, 7 years [3-14]; 38% female), were enrolled. Among 195 patients with acute leukemia, the likelihood of bacteremia was significantly lower in the levofloxacin prophylaxis group than in the control group (21.9% vs 43.4%; risk difference, 21.6%; 95% CI, 8.8%-34.4%, P = .001), whereas among 418 patients undergoing HSCT, the risk of bacteremia was not significantly lower in the levofloxacin prophylaxis group (11.0% vs 17.3%; risk difference, 6.3%; 95% CI, 0.3%-13.0%; P = .06). Fever and neutropenia were less common in the levofloxacin group (71.2% vs 82.1%; risk difference, 10.8%; 95% CI, 4.2%-17.5%; P = .002). There were no significant differences in severe infection (3.6% vs 5.9%; risk difference, 2.3%; 95% CI, -1.1% to 5.6%; P = .20), invasive fungal disease (2.9% vs 2.0%; risk difference, -1.0%; 95% CI, -3.4% to 1.5%, P = .41), C difficile-associated diarrhea (2.3% vs 5.2%; risk difference, 2.9%; 95% CI, -0.1% to 5.9%; P = .07), or musculoskeletal toxic effects at 2 months (11.4% vs 16.3%; risk difference, 4.8%; 95% CI, -1.6% to 11.2%; P = .15) or at 12 months (10.1% vs 14.4%; risk difference, 4.3%; 95% CI, -3.4% to 12.0%; P = .28) between the levofloxacin and control groups.</p>

<p><strong>Conclusions and Relevance: </strong>Among children with acute leukemia receiving intensive chemotherapy, receipt of levofloxacin prophylaxis compared with no prophylaxis resulted in a significant reduction in bacteremia. However, there was no significant reduction in bacteremia for levofloxacin prophylaxis among children undergoing HSCT.</p>



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