Advancing pediatric antimicrobial stewardship: Has pharmacodynamic dosing for gram-negative infections taken effect?

Antimicrob Steward Healthc Epidemiol. 2021 Dec 10;1(1):e61. doi: 10.1017/ash.2021.199. eCollection 2021.


Objective: To characterize pharmacodynamic dosing strategies used at children's hospitals using a national survey.

Design: Survey.

Setting: Children's hospitals.

Participants: Volunteer sample of antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP) respondents.

Methods: A nationwide survey was conducted to gain greater insight into the current adoption of nontraditional dosing methods and monitoring of select β-lactam and fluoroquinolone antibiotics used to treat serious gram-negative infections in pediatric populations. The survey was performed through the Sharing Antimicrobial Reports for Pediatric Stewardship (SHARPS) Collaborative.

Results: Of the 75 children's hospitals that responded, 68% of programs reported adoption of pharmacodynamically optimized dosing using prolonged β-lactam infusions and 35% using continuous β-lactam infusions, although use was infrequent. Factors including routine MIC monitoring and formal postgraduate training and board certification of ASP pharmacists were associated with increased utilization of pharmacodynamic dosing. In addition, 60% of programs reported using pharmacodynamically optimized ciprofloxacin and 14% reported using pharmacodynamically optimized levofloxacin. Only 20% of programs monitored β-lactam levels; they commonly cited lack of published guidance, practitioner experience, and laboratomory support as reasons for lack of utilization. Less physician time dedicated to ASP programs was associated with lower adoption of optimized dosing.

Conclusions: Use of pharmacodynamic dosing through prolonged and continuous infusions of β-lactams have not yet been routinely adopted at children's hospitals. Further guidance from trials and literature are needed to continue to guide pediatric pharmacodynamic dosing efforts. Children's hospitals should utilize these data to compare practices and to prioritize further research and education efforts.