Purpose: To report the resolution of a fluoroquinolone-resistant Escherichia coli keratitis with use of a prosthetic replacement of the ocular surface ecosystem (PROSE) device for enhanced targeted delivery of moxifloxiacin.
Observations: A 62-year-old female presented with a 3-day history of pain, photophobia, and declining vision in left eye. The patient had a 2-year history of binocular PROSE treatment for ocular chronic graft-vs-host disease (cGVHD). A corneal ulcer was diagnosed and treated with topical 0.5% moxifloxacin solution 6 times per day, with continued wear of the PROSE device. After 4 days, worsening symptoms led to an increase in application of moxifloxicin to every 2 hours while awake. The drug was administered by removal of the device, cleaning and replenishing the reservoir with sterile saline, and adding one drop of the drug to the reservoir prior to reinsertion. Four days later, the corneal surface was epithelialized with only small subepithelial infiltrate remaining. The corneal culture grew an E. coli isolate carrying multiple mutations in the topoisomerase genes. These mutations were correlated with varying levels of resistance to ciprofloxacin (256 μg/mL), levofloxacin (8 μg/mL), and moxifloxacin (16 μg/mL).
Conclusions and importance: Although the infecting E. coli strain exhibited resistance to fluoroquinolones, the infection resolved when moxifloxacin was combined with PROSE therapy. Frequent dosing to the PROSE reservoir is likely to increase fluoroquinolone bioavailability and may represent a valuable approach to overcome antibiotic resistance.
Keywords: Antibiotic resistance; Bacterial keratitis; Escherichia coli; Fluoroquinolone; Prosthetic replacement of the ocular surface ecosystem (PROSE).