More Effective Medication at Treating Elders' Pneumonia

The national study included 281 patients at 47 centers and the findings have been coordinated at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Treated with the newer medication, moxifloxacin HCI, 97.9 per cent of hospitalized patients recovered within three to five days of therapy onset, compared to 90 per cent of patients treated with the standard medication, levofloxacin.

The earlier application of Moxifloxacin HCI's in hospitals should lead to less occurrence of incapacitating long-term effects said Antonio Anzueto M.D., professor of medicine at the Health Science Center who led the study "Another important question was safety," added Anzueto. "This study involved very sophisticated assessment of cardiac safety. We found both treatments to be safe." But this study compared for the first time two leading antibiotics for CAP in a well-controlled clinical trial.

"The CAPRIE study is very unique in that it was conducted only in patients 65 and older, such as the median age was 78," said Anzueto. The study is reported in the current issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases.

CAP is the fifth-leading cause of death in the elderly, is diagnosed in 5.6 million adults annually in the U.S., and is 60 percent more likely to occur in the elderly than in the general population. Moxifloxacin HCI and levofloxacin are in a group of antibiotics known as fluoroquinolones.; Source: University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio