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Intensive care patients should be given prophylactic antibiotics

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.327.7418.770 (Published 02 October 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:770
  1. Tony Sheldon
  1. Utrecht

    Hospital deaths among patients in intensive care units could be cut by a quarter if patients were given a cocktail of prophylactic antibiotics, a large randomised controlled study in the Netherlands has said (Lancet 2003;362: 1011–6).


    Embedded Image

    Advocating the use of prophylactic antibiotics in intensive care has been described as like “swearing in church”

    Credit: HORACIO SORMANI/SPL

    Amsterdam's Academic Medical Centre, which carried out the study, believes it has put the treatment back on the agenda by showing an “impressive reduction” in mortality in longer stay intensive care patients. It also shows that …

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