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An evaluation of community-acquired urinary tract infection and appropriateness of treatment in an emergency department in Saudi Arabia

Authors Alanazi MQ

Received 1 July 2018

Accepted for publication 23 October 2018

Published 5 December 2018 Volume 2018:14 Pages 2363—2373


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Garry Walsh

Menyfah Q Alanazi1,2

1Drug Policy and Economic Center, King Abdulaziz Medical City, Ministry of National Guard – Health Affairs, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 2King Abdullah International Medical Research Center (KAIMRC), King Saud Bin-Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Introduction: Urinary tract infection (UTI) is a serious health problem affecting millions of people every year. Inappropriate antibiotic prescriptions put patients at risk and lead to bacterial resistance and elevated costs.
Aims: Study aims were to assess the prevalence and antibiotic-treatment patterns of community acquired UTIs, prevalence and types of antibiotic-prescribing errors, and the cost of inappropriate antibiotic use.
Methods: This was a retrospective cross-sectional study conducted over a 3-month period in an emergency department in Saudi Arabia.
Results: During the study period, 1,449 patients were diagnosed with UTIs, including pediatric (18.6%), adult (59.2%), and elderly (22.2%) patients. The overall prevalence of UTIs was 9.9% of total visits. Broad-spectrum antibiotics were prescribed for 85% of patients. Three main antibiotics were prescribed: cephalosporin (39%), penicillin (26%), and fluoroquinolone (22%). The overall prevalence of inappropriate antibiotic prescription with at least one type of error was 46.2% (pediatrics 51%, adults 46%, elderly 47%). Errors were dose (37%), duration (11%), frequency (6%), and antibiotic selection (2.4%). Dose error was significantly greater in pediatric patients (P=0.001). Duration error was higher among adults and the elderly (P=0.014). Significantly more inappropriate cephalosporin prescriptions were seen in adults (P=0.001), while penicillin had significantly higher errors in pediatric patients. Positive urine culture was seen in 34.9% of patients, and the most common microorganism was Escherichia coli (51%). The mean cost of care for one episode of UTI was US$134.56±$31.34 (95% CI $132.94–$136.17). Treatment of UTI was more costly in women (63.9% of total cost), adults (59.2%), and those using broad-spectrum antibiotics (86.5%). There were statistically significant associations among sex, age, spectrum of antibiotic, category of antibiotic, and inappropriate cost.
Conclusion: The results revealed a significant level of inappropriate use of antibiotics in the treatment of UTIs in the emergency department.

Keywords: prevalence, urinary tract infection, antibiotic, cost, inappropriate antibiotic, resistance, antibiotics resistance

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