For patients at risk for multidrug-resistant organisms, IDSA/ATS guidelines recommend empiric therapy against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Pseudomonas. Following negative cultures, the guidelines recommend antimicrobial de-escalation. We assessed antibiotic de-escalation practices across hospitals and their associations with outcomes in hospitalized pneumonia patients with negative cultures.
We included adults admitted with pneumonia in 2010-2015 to 164 US hospitals if they had negative blood and/or respiratory cultures and received both anti-MRSA and antipseudomonal agents other than quinolones. De-escalation was defined as stopping both empiric drugs on day 4 while continuing another antibiotic. Patients were propensity-adjusted for de-escalation and comparedon in-hospital 14-day mortality, late deterioration (ICU transfer), length-of-stay (LOS) and costs. We also compared adjusted outcomes across hospital de-escalation rate quartiles.