Is Antibiotic Resistance a Problem in the Treatment of Ophthalmic Infections?

Regis P Kowalski


Expert Rev Ophthalmol. 2013;8(2):119-126. 

In This Article

Resistance Spreads From Patient to Patient

The opportunity of bacterial resistance to spread from patient to patient is limited in the field of ophthalmology. The literature does not describe any epidemics of bacterial endophthalmitis or bacterial keratitis. Bacterial conjunctivitis can be involved in outbreaks in closed-quartered environments such as schools and possibly physician office practices. Conditions such as endophthalmitis, keratitis and blepharitis are not associated with bacterial spread. Figures 11 & 12 depict the antibiotic susceptibilities of S. pneumoniae and H. influenzae from 1993 to 2011. The figures indicate that there are no conclusive trends for antibiotic resistance. The self-limitation of conjunctivitis may not allow sufficient time for antibiotic resistance to develop. Erythromycin and sulfacetamide do not appear intrinsically to be the best in vitro coverage for S. pneumoniae and H. influenzae conjunctivitis, respectively.

Figure 12.

Antibacterial susceptibilities of Haemophilus influenzae isolated from conjunctivitis (1993–2011). Lines of the antibiotics overlap due to high susceptibility.