The effectiveness of colistin/levofloxacin compared to colistin/meropenem in the treatment of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) caused by carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii: a randomized controlled clinical trial

Mahnaz Momenzadeh , Rasool Soltani , Fatemeh Shafiee, Atousa Hakamifard, Morteza Pourahmad, Saeed Abbasi


Background and purpose: The treatment of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) caused by carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB) is still a great challenge. This study evaluated the effectiveness of the colistin/levofloxacin regimen compared to the usual colistin/meropenem regimen in the treatment of patients with VAP caused by CRAB.

Experimental approach: The patients with VAP were randomly assigned to experimental (n = 26) and control (n = 29) groups. The first group received IV colistin 4.5 MIU every 12 h + levofloxacin 750 mg IV daily, and the second group received IV colistin with the same dose + meropenem 1 g IV every 8 h for 10 days. The clinical (complete response, partial response, or treatment failure) and microbiological responses at the end of the intervention were recorded and compared between the two groups.

Findings/Results: The complete response rate was higher (n = 7; 35%) and the failure rate was lower                           (n = 4; 20%) in the experimental group than in the control group (n = 2; 8%, and n = 11; 44%, respectively), but the differences were not statistically significant. Even though the microbiological response rate was higher in the experimental group (n = 14; 70%) than in the control group (n = 12; 48%), the difference was not statistically significant. The mortality rate was 6 (23.10%) and 4 patients (13.8%) in the experimental and control groups, respectively (P = 0.490).

Conclusion and implication: The levofloxacin/colistin combination can be considered an alternative regimen to meropenem/colistin in the treatment of VAP caused by CRAB.


Acinetobacter baumannii; Colistin; Levofloxacin; Meropenem; Ventilator-associated pneumonia.

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