A double-blind treatment study comparing ampicillin trihydrate and placebo was performed in 373 outpatients with acute diarrhea. No pathogens were isolated from 58.4% of patients. Shigella strains were recovered from 27.1% of patients, enteropathogenic serotypes of Escherichia coli were isolated from 9.1% of cases, and 3.2% of patients excreted Salmonella. Two pathogens were present in the stools of 2.1% of patients. Bacteriologic failure occurred in 8% of patients with shigellosis treated with ampicillin compared with a 70% failure rate in placebo-treated patients. Clinical failure developed in 5% of ampicillin-treated patients and in 40% of those who received placebo. Ampicillin is as effective in outpatients with milder shigellosis as it is in patients hospitalized with severe disease.
Haltalin KC, Kusmiesz HT, Hinton LV, Nelson JD. Treatment of Acute Diarrhea in Outpatients: Double-Blind Study Comparing Ampicillin and Placebo. Am J Dis Child. 1972;124(4):554–561. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1972.02110160092010
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