Microbiota Disruption Associated With Antibiotics Increased Risk for Sepsis

The research highlights the importance of prevention, including antimicrobial stewardship.

NEW ORLEANS —  Antibiotic use in the hospital can correlate microbiota disruption and increase risk for sepsis following hospital discharge, according to research presented at IDWeek 2016.

James Baggs, PhD, of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and colleagues used Truven Health MarketScan Hospital Drug Database records gathered between 2006 and 2010 to identify patients who had sepsis following antibiotic exposure (defined through ICD-9 codes).

During his presentation, Dr Baggs noted that the researchers selected 9,386,961 adult index visits without current or prior sepsis diagnosis. They noted that of those visits, 0.6% of those patients had sepsis within 3 months of discharge, and that “exposure to a high risk antibiotic during the index visit was associated with a greater risk of sepsis during readmission compared to patients with no antibiotic exposure,”(OR= 1.50; 95% CI,1.47-1.53.) 

Dr Baggs noted that there were several strengths of the study, in that the population included more than 500 hospitals and included multiple years of data, but he said the findings were limited in that there was a “misclassification as the database data were not collected for research purposes.”

He noted that the research highlights the importance of prevention, including antimicrobial stewardship.

“There are conditions for which antibiotics are unnecessary yet are often prescribed, thereby needlessly increasing patient risks for complications,” Dr Baggs said. 


1. Baggs J, Jernigan J, Mccormick K, et al. Increased risk of sepsis during hospital readmission following exposure to certain antibtioics during hospitalization. Presented at: IDWeek 2016. New Orleans, LA; October 26-30, 2016. Abstract 73.