Proposal for shorter antibiotic therapies

Med Mal Infect. 2017 Mar;47(2):92-141. doi: 10.1016/j.medmal.2017.01.007. Epub 2017 Mar 6.


Objectives: Reducing antibiotic consumption has now become a major public health priority. Reducing treatment duration is one of the means to achieve this objective. Guidelines on the therapeutic management of the most frequent infections recommend ranges of treatment duration in the ratio of one to two. The Recommendation Group of the French Infectious Diseases Society (SPILF) was asked to collect literature data to then recommend the shortest treatment durations possible for various infections.

Methods: Analysis of the literature focused on guidelines published in French and English, supported by a systematic search on PubMed. Articles dating from one year before the guidelines publication to August 31, 2015 were searched on the website.

Results: The shortest treatment durations based on the relevant clinical data were suggested for upper and lower respiratory tract infections, central venous catheter-related and uncomplicated primary bacteremia, infective endocarditis, bacterial meningitis, intra-abdominal, urinary tract, upper reproductive tract, bone and joint, skin and soft tissue infections, and febrile neutropenia. Details of analyzed articles were shown in tables.

Conclusion: This work stresses the need for new well-conducted studies evaluating treatment durations for some common infections. Following the above-mentioned work focusing on existing literature data, the Recommendation Group of the SPILF suggests specific study proposals.

Keywords: Antibiothérapie; Antibiotic consumption; Antibiotic stewardship; Antibiotic therapy; Bon usage; Consommation d’antibiotiques; Durée de traitement; Short treatment; Traitement court; Treatment duration.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Bacterial Infections / drug therapy*
  • Drug Utilization / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Time Factors


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents