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A systematic review investigating the use of microbiology outcome measures in randomized controlled trials evaluating antimicrobial stewardship interventions published between 2011 and 2021

Lau, Tin Man Mandy, Daniel, Rhian, Hughes, Kathryn, Wootton, Mandy, Hood, Kerry and Gillespie, David 2022. A systematic review investigating the use of microbiology outcome measures in randomized controlled trials evaluating antimicrobial stewardship interventions published between 2011 and 2021. JAC-Antimicrobial Resistance 4 (1) , dlac013. 10.1093/jacamr/dlac013

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Abstract

Introduction Antimicrobial stewardship interventions (ASIs) aim to reduce the emergence of antimicrobial resistance. We sought to systematically evaluate how microbiological outcomes have been handled and analysed in randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating ASIs. Methods We searched PubMed and Embase from 2011–21. Studies were selected if they were RCTs evaluating ASIs. A narrative synthesis approach was taken, identifying whether the study reported any microbiological data (bacterial genus/species; bacterial colony counts; prevalence of bacterial, microbiologically defined infections; and antibiotic susceptibility, measured pre-randomization or post-randomization in one arm only) or outcomes (post-randomization data compared between arms). Studies with or without microbiological data/outcomes were summarized in terms of study characteristics, methods of reporting and analysis of these outcomes. Results We identified 117 studies, with 34 (29.1%) collecting microbiological data and 18 (15.4%) reporting microbiological outcomes. Most studies with microbiological outcomes were conducted in secondary care (12/18, 66.7%) and targeted adult populations (14/18, 77.8%), and the intervention involved biomarker-guided rapid diagnostic testing (7/18, 38.9%). The overall quality of reporting and analysing microbiological outcomes was low and inconsistent. The selected study population in analyses and methods of handling missing data were unclear. Conclusions This review demonstrates that the quality of handling and reporting microbiological outcomes in RCTs of ASIs was low. The lack of consistency and clarity made it difficult to compare the findings across studies, limiting policy- and clinical decision-making. Therefore, there is a clear need for the development of guidance for handling microbiological outcomes in RCTs and adopting appropriate methods to evaluate these data carefully.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Centre for Trials Research (CNTRR)
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 2632-1823
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 10 March 2022
Date of Acceptance: 21 January 2022
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2022 08:16
URI: https://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/148288

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