Exposure to whole-body irradiation is associated with fatal gram-negative sepsis. The optimal length of therapy of such infection is not established. The effect of short and long courses of oral therapy with the quinolone ofloxacin for orally acquired Klebsiella pneumoniae infection was tested in${\rm B}6{\rm D}2{\rm F}_{1}$ mice exposed to 8.0 Gy of bilateral radiation from60 Co. A dose of 108 organisms was given orally 4 days after irradiation, and therapy was started 1 day later. Cultures of the ileum 7 days after irradiation showed the recovery of K. pneumoniae in 7 of 10 untreated mice and in 3 of 20 treated with ofloxacin. However, 14 days after irradiation K. pneumoniae was isolated in 5 of 6 untreated mice, in 7 of 9 that received the short course of therapy, and in one of those that received the long course of therapy (P < 0.05). At Day 7, K. pneumoniae was isolated from the livers of 6 of 10 untreated mice, and from none of those receiving ofloxacin (P < 0.05). At 14 days, K. pneumoniae was isolated in 4 of 6 untreated animals, in 4 of 9 that received the short course of therapy, and in none of the mice that received the long course of therapy (P < 0.05). Only 3 of 20 (15%) untreated mice survived for 30 days as compared to 11 of 20 (55%) mice treated for 7 days with ofloxacin and 18 of 20 (90%) mice treated for 21 days with ofloxacin (P < 0.05). These survival data illustrate the efficacy of a 21-day course over a 7-day course of ofloxacin therapy for orally acquired K. pneumoniae infection in irradiated hosts.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.