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The Randomized Controlled STRAWINSKI Trial: Procalcitonin-Guided Antibiotic Therapy after Stroke


Abstract

BACKGROUND Pneumonia is among the most common acute complications after stroke and is associated with poor long-term outcome. Biomarkers may help identifying stroke patients at high risk for developing stroke-associated pneumonia (SAP) and to guide early treatment. AIMS This trial investigated whether procalcitonin (PCT) ultrasensitive (PCTus)-guided antibiotic treatment of SAP can improve functional outcome after stroke. METHODS In this international, multicenter, randomized, controlled clinical trial with blinded assessment of outcomes, patients with severe ischemic stroke in the middle cerebral artery territory were randomly assigned within 40 h after symptom onset to PCTus-based antibiotic therapy guidance in addition to stroke unit care or standard stroke unit care alone. The primary endpoint was functional outcome at 3 months, defined according to the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) and dichotomized as acceptable (≤4) or unacceptable (≥5). Secondary endpoints included usage of antibiotics, infection rates, days of fever, and mortality. The trial was registered with http://ClinicalTrials.gov (Identifier NCT01264549). RESULTS In the intention-to-treat-analysis based on 227 patients (112 in PCT and 115 in control group), 197 patients completed the 3-month follow-up. Adherence to PCT guidance was 65%. PCT-guided therapy did not improve functional outcome as measured by mRS (odds ratio 0.79; 95% confidence interval 0.45-1.35, p = 0.47). Pneumonia rate and mortality were similar in both groups. Days with fever tended to be lower (p = 0.055), whereas total number of days treated with antibiotics were higher (p = 0.004) in PCT compared to control group. A post hoc analysis including all PCT values in the intention-to-treat population demonstrated a significant increase on the first day of infection in patients with pneumonia and sepsis compared to patients with urinary tract infections or without infections (p < 0.0001). CONCLUSION PCTus-guided antibiotic therapy did not improve functional outcome at 3 months after severe ischemic stroke. PCT is a promising biomarker for early detection of pneumonia and sepsis in acute stroke patients.

Abstract

BACKGROUND Pneumonia is among the most common acute complications after stroke and is associated with poor long-term outcome. Biomarkers may help identifying stroke patients at high risk for developing stroke-associated pneumonia (SAP) and to guide early treatment. AIMS This trial investigated whether procalcitonin (PCT) ultrasensitive (PCTus)-guided antibiotic treatment of SAP can improve functional outcome after stroke. METHODS In this international, multicenter, randomized, controlled clinical trial with blinded assessment of outcomes, patients with severe ischemic stroke in the middle cerebral artery territory were randomly assigned within 40 h after symptom onset to PCTus-based antibiotic therapy guidance in addition to stroke unit care or standard stroke unit care alone. The primary endpoint was functional outcome at 3 months, defined according to the modified Rankin Scale (mRS) and dichotomized as acceptable (≤4) or unacceptable (≥5). Secondary endpoints included usage of antibiotics, infection rates, days of fever, and mortality. The trial was registered with http://ClinicalTrials.gov (Identifier NCT01264549). RESULTS In the intention-to-treat-analysis based on 227 patients (112 in PCT and 115 in control group), 197 patients completed the 3-month follow-up. Adherence to PCT guidance was 65%. PCT-guided therapy did not improve functional outcome as measured by mRS (odds ratio 0.79; 95% confidence interval 0.45-1.35, p = 0.47). Pneumonia rate and mortality were similar in both groups. Days with fever tended to be lower (p = 0.055), whereas total number of days treated with antibiotics were higher (p = 0.004) in PCT compared to control group. A post hoc analysis including all PCT values in the intention-to-treat population demonstrated a significant increase on the first day of infection in patients with pneumonia and sepsis compared to patients with urinary tract infections or without infections (p < 0.0001). CONCLUSION PCTus-guided antibiotic therapy did not improve functional outcome at 3 months after severe ischemic stroke. PCT is a promising biomarker for early detection of pneumonia and sepsis in acute stroke patients.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Neurology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Date:2017
Deposited On:08 Feb 2018 14:19
Last Modified:01 Mar 2018 01:52
Publisher:Frontiers Research Foundation
ISSN:1664-2295
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3389/fneur.2017.00153
PubMed ID:28484421

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