Renowned pediatricians and
otolaryngologists from across the country, all members of the American Academy
of Pediatrics, met in Boston to review data on alternative treatments to oral
antibiotics when treating children with ear tubes who develop ear infections
with drainage. Each year approximately 2 million children suffer from
recurring ear infections that lead to the placement of ear tubes. Doctors and
parents have traditionally fought middle ear infections with oral antibiotics.
However, middle ear infections in children with ear tubes may call for
alternative treatment options, such as the topical antibiotic Floxin ® Otic
(ofloxacin otic solution) 0.3%.
"The use of antibiotic ear drops for treating children with infected ear
tubes is not currently common amongst primary care physicians," explained
panel chairperson Jerome O. Klein, M.D., Vice Chairman Academic Affairs,
Department of Pediatrics, Boston Medical Center and Professor of Pediatrics,
Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA. "Our purpose for meeting
today is to address the scientific data about the use of topical treatments,
in particular Floxin Otic, with the expectation of raising awareness among
primary care providers about this treatment option."
As the incidence of antibiotic resistance increases, one problem with oral
antibiotic treatment, particularly for children who suffer from recurring
infections, is that the more an antibiotic is used the more likely the
bacteria will develop resistance to the medication.
"A topical antibiotic can be the first-line treatment of choice when
treating ear drainage and infected ear tubes, if there is no underlying
systemic infection," stated panelist Seth Pransky, M.D., Director, Pediatric
Otolaryngology at Children's Hospital, San Diego, CA. "When appropriate, I
prescribe Floxin Otic for such infections, as it presents a safe and effective
alternative treatment to oral antibiotics."
Identifying and prescribing an alternative to oral antibiotics may help
reduce the risk of developing resistance.
"Antibiotic resistance is not a new phenomena. In fact, its beginnings
can be traced back to the 1930s with the introduction of antimicrobial drugs.
Anything we as parents and physicians can do to facilitate a more judicious
use of oral antibiotics can help reduce a child's exposure to bacteria with
increased resistance," commented Klein.
The proceedings from the August 15th meeting will be published in a future
issue of the Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal.