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Top 5 Contagion® News Articles for the Week of March 19, 2017


#4: Obesity and Heart Failure Increase Odds of Treatment Failure in SSTI Patients 

Obesity has been linked with a number of complications when coupled with other health conditions and treatment, and researchers have now uncovered one more. According to the results of a new study, “outpatients with uncomplicated skin and soft tissue infections (SSTIs) who have heart failure and obesity are at increased risk of failing oral antibiotic therapy.”
Incidence of SSTIs in the outpatient setting in the United States has been steadily increasing. In fact, in 1997, incidence was 8.6 million, and in 2005, the number of cases almost doubled at 14.2 million. In addition, rates of hospitalizations for poorly managed infections have also continued to rise.
Treatment for these infections in the outpatient setting is typically a course of oral antibiotics. The failure rate for these treatments can range from 10% to 21%. The risk factors that contribute to failure have been up to now unknown. Therefore, researchers from Veterans Affairs Western New York Healthcare System sought to learn the factors that contribute to these failure rates, at least in the Western New York Healthcare System.
The researchers found that patients who had failed antibiotic treatment within 30 days, “had a greater mean BMI than those who experienced successful treatment (34.2 kg/m2 vs31.32 kg/m2; P = 0.0098); they also had an increased prevalence of heart failure (15.9% vs 7.1%; P = 0.027).”
In an interview with Contagion®, Kari A. Mergenhagen, PharmD, BCPS AQ-ID, Veterans Affairs Western New York Healthcare System, Buffalo, New York, the study’s senior said, “Some possible solutions might include increased doses of oral antibiotics, use of intravenous antibiotic therapy, or closer follow up with health care professionals.”
Read more about the effect obesity and heart failure have on SSTI treatment here

Want more information on this topic and the opportunity to ask questions of an expert? Register for a live, ACPE accredited webinar February 28th 8-9 PM EST at this link:
Influenza A (H3N2) has caused most of the illnesses in this severe flu season, but influenza B is becoming increasingly responsible for more infections as the flu season continues to hit the United States.