Background Linezolid and vancomycin are the antibiotics most commonly used in the treatment of pneumonia caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
Purpose To study the mortality of inpatients diagnosed with pneumonia and treated with vancomycin and linezolid.
Materials and methods Retrospective and descriptive study of patients with pneumonia in 2011 treated with vancomycin and/or linezolid. Information was collected through the SAVAC and SELENE computer systems and medical record review. The parameters analysed were: length of stay, mortality during hospitalisation and at 30 days, age and sex.
Results Thirty patients were included. Twenty of them were treated with vancomycin 1 g/12 h and ten with linezolid 600 mg/12 h. Four of them were first treated with vancomycin, and after failure they were switched to linezolid. The vancomycin group consisted of 15 (75%) men and 5 (25%) women. Median age was 78 years. Median hospital stay was 25 days. Total mortality was 65%, since 3 (15%) of the 13 died within 30 days of leaving hospital. The linezolid group consisted of 8 (80%) men and two (20%) women. The median age was 78 years. The median hospital stay was 17 days. Total mortality was 80%, all deaths occurring while they were still in hospital. The fact that 4 patients were switched to linezolid treatment after treatment failure with vancomycin may possibly explain the high mortality rate in this group. Excluding these four patients in the two groups, mortality was 45% in the vancomycin group and 40% in the linezolid group, although the hospital stay was 7 days shorter for the linezolid group.
Conclusions For this group of patients, the linezolid group presented a shorter hospital stay compared with the vancomycin group, but mortality appears to be similar between the two drugs. Considering the limitations of the study, further studies would be necessary to confirm or refute the results of this study.
No conflict of interest.
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