Community-acquired bacterial respiratory tract infections are among the most common health disorders requiring medical care and are associated with substantial morbidity, mortality, and direct and indirect costs. Recent increases in the prevalence of antimicrobial resistance have resulted in reduced susceptibility of the most common respiratory tract bacterial pathogens to a number of antimicrobials. Amoxicillin/clavulanate potassium extended release (ER) tablets (Augmentin XR, GlaxoSmithKline) is a new formulation of amoxicillin/clavulanate that retains activity against betalactamase-producing organisms whilst increasing the activity against Streptococcus pneumoniae through elevated and sustained plasma amoxicillin concentrations. The bilayer tablet provides immediate release of clavulanate and both immediate and sustained release of amoxicillin to maintain therapeutic concentrations of amoxicillin over longer periods of the dosing interval. In clinical trials of acute bacterial sinusitis (ABS) and community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), amoxicillin/clavulanate ER was shown to have excellent bacteriological and clinical success rates, even in patients infected with antimicrobial-resistant pathogens, and was found to be generally well tolerated. Amoxicillin/clavulanate ER is approved in the US for the treatment of patients with ABS or CAP caused by beta-lactamase-producing pathogens (ie, Haemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis, Haemophilus parainfluenzae, Klebsiella pneumoniae, or methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus) and S. pneumoniae with reduced susceptibility to penicillin (penicillin minimum inhibitory concentration = 2.0 microg/ml).