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Research Letter
Less Is More
September 2016

Use of Antibiotics Among Patients Hospitalized for Exacerbations of Asthma

Author Affiliations
  • 1Center for Quality of Care Research, Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, Massachusetts
  • 2Division of Hospital Medicine, Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, Massachusetts
  • 3Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 4Veterans Affairs Health Services Research and Development, Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered and Value-Driven Care, Seattle, Washington
  • 5Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care, University of Washington, Seattle
  • 6Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • 7Population Health Sciences Program, University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System, Chicago
JAMA Intern Med. 2016;176(9):1397-1400. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.4050

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 37% of all antibiotic use in hospitals may be inappropriate, and reducing unnecessary antibiotic prescribing is now considered an urgent national priority.1,2 In the United States alone, asthma exacerbations led to 1.8 million emergency department visits and 400 000 hospitalizations annually.3 Although guidelines recommend against prescribing antibiotics during exacerbations of asthma in the absence of concurrent infection, little is known about the use of antibiotics in routine clinical practice.4,5

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